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Bearing Coatings

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Rolling element bearings continue to develop to meet the needs of ever-increasing speeds and loads. We might expect that there would be few applications of engineering coatings to these components, but there is a growing number of applications for which we might consider various coating options. A few months ago, in an article on plasma and thermally sprayed ceramic coatings, I wrote about the use of electrically insulating coatings being applied to the outer races of rolling element...

Thermal barrier coatings

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We have discussed a number of applications for thermal barrier coatings in RET-Monitor, and also in RET magazine. Most of these are concerned either with maintaining the heat within the exhaust gas flow for improving turbocharger transient response or minimising the transfer of heat through radiation or convection to other components close to the exhaust system. Where coating the exhaust isn't possible, then coating heat-sensitive components or the heat shields protecting them is...

Thermal/plasma-sprayed ceramics

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The main use for ceramic coatings for racing powertrains is on exhaust system components and various heat shields. The very low thermal conductivity of many metal oxides makes them ideal candidates where we would like a coating to reduce heat transfer. This might be desirable in order to improve the transient response of a turbocharger by keeping the temperature of the exhaust gas as high as possible, to protect other components that are sensitive to temperature or to reduce heat transfer...

Polymer coatings in race engines

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This month's RET-Monitor article on materials discusses some of the uses of polymer materials for manufacturing race engine components. Polymers, in comparison to most engineering metals, generally lack strength and stiffness. They are also often more limited than metals in terms of temperature resistance and corrosion. They do have some useful properties though, which can be put to good use in a racing powertrain. In general they are electrically non-conductive and have low thermal...

Electroless nickel

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The technique of electroless nickel plating has been used widely in race engines for a long time. Electroless nickel is a family of coatings rather than a single coating, and a number of electroless nickel 'composite' coatings are available. Even where the coating is a plain nickel coating rather than a composite, there are different types of coating. Basic electroless nickel plating generally contains a high percentage of other elements, most notably phosphorous but sometimes boron....