Abstract

The wire arc spraying process, one of several thermal spray processes, gained a sizable part of the thermal spray market, however, more control is needed for this process to be used for high precision coatings. This study is aimed at investigating the liquid metal droplet formation process in order to identify methods for droplet trajectory control. A high speed Kodak imaging system has been used to observe the droplet formation for different operating conditions. Decreasing the upstream pressure and the current levels lead to the reduction in the asymmetric melting of both anode and cathode. By decreasing the interactions of the large eddy structures with the formed metal agglomerates one can achieve better control of the particle trajectories and jet divergence. Thus, coatings can be obtained with higher definition and improved reliability.

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