Traditional hard chrome electroplating and Type II anodizing technologies have long been employed in the surface preparation or final coating of various aircraft components—landing gears and other functional parts chief among them. But for other key sections of the aircraft—namely the critical blades comprising the workhouse gas turbine engines—repair stations and OEMs typically opt for the higher performance thermal barrier coatings. Generally applied via electron beam physical vapor deposition, or EBPVD, these thermal barrier coatings—proponents say—are better equipped to handle the extremely high temperatures of today’s advanced gas turbine engines, which can exceed 2400°F.
One highly regarded specialist in this area is Chromalloy, a leading independent supplier of technologically advanced repairs, coatings, and FAA-approved re-engineered parts for turbine airfoils and critical engine components for commercial airlines, military craft, industrial turbine engines, and aero-derivative applications. A pioneer in the development of commercially viable aluminide coatings that subsequently led to additional breakthroughs, Chromalloy has introduced a series of innovative and proprietary processes that allow engines to perform at improved efficiency levels, at higher operating temperatures and under severe environmental conditions.