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Real-Time Thickness Measurement Technology for Process Control of Coating Manufacturing

Award Information
Agency: Department of Commerce
Branch: National Institute of Standards and Technology
Contract: 70NANB22H187
Agency Tracking Number: 060-FY22
Amount: $100,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: 2
Solicitation Number: N/A
Solicitation Year: 2022
Award Year: 2022
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2022-10-01
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2023-03-31
Small Business Information
104 Timber Drive
Storrs, CT 06268-1227
United States
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Eric Jordan
 Chief Operations Officer
 (860) 420-6216
Business Contact
 Balakrishnan Nair
Title: Founder and Member
Phone: (801) 897-1221
Research Institution

Highly engineered ceramic coatings, called thermal barrier coatings (TBCs), have been used for many years in the gas turbine industry, and more recently, in internal combustion engines for automotive, truck, and construction vehicle applications. These coatings increase the performance and durability of the engines. The gas turbine industry has shown that coating thickness variations are major sources of variation in coating and component service lives. To define and control service life, there is a strong need to be able to measure coating thickness during processing, especially on components with a small radius of curvature. The goal of the proposed program is to demonstrate a laser-induced ultrasonic coating thickness measurement system capable of measuring relatively thin (25-350 μm) ceramic coatings, with a spot size less than 1 mm. Applications include both postcoating part inspection and real-time measurement during thermal spray. The SST proposed measurement system will consist of a pulsed laser to excite ultrasonic waves in the coating, and a continuous probe laser to monitor the resulting surface oscillations. The propagation time of the wave through the coating is directly related to its thickness.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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