Plasma spraying is a novel technology in comparison to most other current practices in aerospace manufacturing. Although its development has been rapid during the recent decades, it still requires major improvements in order to reach the maturity of other coating processes such as nickel plating and chromium plating.
A major challenge is the complexity of plasma spraying, both in terms of the deposition technology but also regarding the obtained properties of the coating. It must be recognised that tie final plasma sprayed coating is constituted of a large number of agglomerated splats, resulting in pores and cracks as additional inherent features. The amount of these defects in each coating varies with the process condition and determines many of the final coating properties. Thus the reliability and reproducibility of the process is a key issue in industrial plasma spraying.
The objective of this paper is to present some industrial examples where a close industry-academia collaboration have increased process reproducibility and economy. Furthermore, some important steps in the overall production process are highlighted.