Thermal Barrier Coatings: Evolved heat shielding technology

Industry : Paints, Coatings & Printing Inks    

Thermal coatings have been in use for several decades now, with their function being to insulate metallic components of gas turbines and aero-engine parts, among others, thereby enabling these components to function at elevated temperatures with minimum efficiency loss. Turbine blades, nozzle guide vanes, and combustor cans are typical examples of components which are coated with thermal barrier products. These coatings facilitate exhaust heat management, of which heat shield, ceramic paints, and heat wrap are the previously-used forms. However, heat shields are typically used owing to their low costs, have been under scrutiny due to the air gaps found between the surface of the component and the shield. Thus, extensive research was conducted to address this challenge, thereby resulting in the development of thermal barrier coatings.

The key raw materials used in the manufacture of thermal barrier coatings include epoxy resins, polymers, zirconia, pyrochlores, and aluminates. The market for these materials has witnessed high volatility during the past few years, thereby impacting the dynamics of the thermal barrier coatings market as well. Moreover, the growing requirement of the same raw materials for other applications may pose significant threats to the growth of the thermal barrier coatings industry, globally.

In recent years, there have been several technological advancements for the efficient application of thermal coatings on to metallic components of gas turbines and aero-engines. For instance, the introduction of the plasma spray and high-velocity oxy-fuel (HVOF) coating technologies enabled more efficient forms of application of thermal coatings. The HVOF process is commonly used for the application of coatings on metals and metal alloys with high melting temperature; some of the common examples of these materials include chrome carbide and tungsten carbide. The introduction of these new technologies has contributed to the reduction of operational time and costs, among other parameters. Such technological advancements in the industry will have significant impacts on the thermal barrier coatings market growth during the years to come.

The global thermal barrier coatings market is highly fragmented and the magnitude of competitive rivalry is expected to intensify in the coming years, mainly as major manufacturers are beginning to invest heavily in R&D and innovation for gaining competitive edge, by tapping into the widening application scope of the coatings, through the introduction of evolved product portfolios. The higher operating efficiencies offered by these products will translate into higher demand over the coming years, thereby promising a lucrative future for the manufacturers in the industry.

  In-depth report on global thermal barrier coatings market by Grand View Research:

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