Experimental Evaluation of Novel Thermal Barrier Coatings in a Single Cylinder Light Duty Diesel Engine
The objective of this investigation was to improve the thermal properties of plasma sprayed thermal barrier coatings (TBC) for internal combustion engines. There is a need for further reduction of thermal conductivity and volumetric heat capacity and the negative effects on heat loss and combustion phasing of surface roughness and permeable porosity, typical for plasma sprayed coatings, should be minimized. Four measures for improvement of TBC properties were evaluated: i) modification of the coating's microstructure by using a novel suspension plasma spraying method, ii) application of gadolinium-zirconate, a novel ceramic material with low thermal conductivity, iii) polishing of the coating to achieve low surface roughness, and iv) sealing of the porous coating surface with a polysilazane. Six coating variants with different combinations of the selected measures were applied on the piston crown and evaluated in a single cylinder light duty diesel engine.