Hot stuff

Amplitude of temperature fluctuations in a turbine blade from a jet engine during a vibration test at 700Hz

There have been no postings for a while because I have been away.  Last week I organised a workshop in Glasgow for engineers in industry and academic on [how we can make] ‘Strain Measurements in Extreme Environments’.  Although this included making measurements on large and fast engineering components, half of the workshop was focussed on evaluating strain at high temperatures, 1000°C to 2000°C, which is hot by most standards.  This is beyond the operating range of most sensors and most materials that remain solid at these temperatures glow, which makes optical measurements challenging.

So why are we interested?  For hypersonic flight including applications such as delivering satellites into orbit.  And, because engines become more efficient when operating at high temperatures.

Can we do it? Not in the real-world but in a laboratory environment some research groups have been successfully using digital image correlation with ceramic particles creating a textured pattern on the hot surface that can be tracked as the hot stuff deforms.

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