The efficiency and reliability of modern jet engines strongly depend on the performance of thermal barrier coatings (TBCs), which prevent melting and oxidation of the turbine blades' structural core. The system's lifetime is limited by cracks appearing in and in the vicinity of an oxide layer that grows in the TBC under thermal cycling. High replacement costs have led to an increased demand to identify, quantify and remedy damage in TBCs. An integrated experimental-numerical approach is presented for studying the main factors that contribute to damage, particularly interfacial irregularities. Damage at several stages of oxidation in TBCs is analyzed in samples with predefined interfacial irregularities. The model predicts the experimentally observed crack patterns, clearly quantifying the influence of imperfections and indicating that damage can be delayed by surface treatment. © 2009 Acta Materialia Inc.
Hille, T. S., Nijdam, T. J., Suiker, A. S. J., Turteltaub, S. R., & Sloof, W. G. (2009). Damage growth triggered by interface irregularities in thermal barrier coatings. Acta Materialia, 57(9), 2624-2630. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.actamat.2009.01.022