Thermal Gradient Testing

The SCS thermal gradient test facility provides:
  • Highly stable and controlled temperature conditions
  • Customisable routines for continuous short or long term testing
  • Video monitoring and continual data capture throughout the entire programme
What can the rig be used for?

The automated rig is designed to test multiple samples simultaneously in a combustion environment whilst continuously monitoring the temperature. In contrast to other conventional isothermal rigs this test rig enables the testing of the entire coating system for future coating applications.

What are the benefits for using this rig?
  • Accelerated development times
  • Rapid benchmark testing
  • Identical cycling conditions (for up to 4 samples)
  • Increased cost-effectiveness over individual coating testing
  • Cyclic oxidation & high heat flux simultaneously
  • Customised cycling periods
  • Customised temperature profiles
Why use a thermal gradient test?

The increasing operating temperature of gas turbine operation is causing surface temperatures of thermal barrier coatings to reach up to 1500°C in service. Isothermal testing cannot reach these temperatures due to limitations of the substrate material. Thermal gradient testing enables very high surface temperatures in the coating whilst maintaining the substrate temperature below its degradation limit. Therefore in order to obtain accurate information of coating systems at very high temperatures thermal gradient testing is necessary.

How is the rig operated?

The thermal gradient cycling rig has been used for commercial clients in both the aerospace and power generation industries as well for the development of SCS’s coating technology. The rig is fully automated to perform customisable cycles in continuous operation for up to four samples simultaneously. The temperature conditions are set to customers’ exacting specifications and remain consistent between cycles and over longer periods. Many different testing regimes have been implemented, from accelerated tests to failure to continuous testing over two weeks.

To view a demonstration video of the rig in action please click here or for a time lapse video of a degrading coating click here.
For more information please read this poster or this flyer.