Higher durability in thermal barrier coatings (TBCs) is constantly sought to enhance the service life of gas turbine engine components such as blades and vanes. In this study, three double layered gadolinium zirconate (GZ)-on-yttria stabilized zirconia (YSZ) TBC variants with varying individual layer thickness but identical total thickness produced by suspension plasma spray (SPS) process were evaluated. The objective was to investigate the role of YSZ layer thickness on the durability of GZ/YSZ double-layered TBCs under different thermal cyclic test conditions i.e., thermal cyclic fatigue (TCF) at 1100 °C and a burner rig test (BRT) at a surface temperature of 1400 °C, respectively. Microstructural characterization was performed using SEM (Scanning Electron Microscopy) and porosity content was measured using image analysis technique. Results reveal that the durability of double-layered TBCs decreased with YSZ thickness under both TCF and BRT test conditions. The TBCs were analyzed by SEM to investigate microstructural evolution as well as failure modes during TCF and BRT test conditions. It was observed that the failure modes varied with test conditions, with all the three double-layered TBC variants showing failure in the TGO (thermally grown oxide) during the TCF test and in the ceramic GZ top coat close to the GZ/YSZ interface during BRT. Furthermore, porosity analysis of the as-sprayed and TCF failed TBCs revealed differences in sintering behavior for GZ and YSZ. The findings from this work provide new insights into the mechanisms responsible for failure of SPS processed double-layered TBCs under different thermal cyclic test conditions.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited