TWI has recently finished a collaborative programme to develop thermal spray coatings for high temperature corrosion mitigation in biomass plants. The DTI/TSB funded HiCoat project (High Corrosion Resistant Coatings for Biomass Plant) involved a number of companies (TWI, Energy Power Resources, Talbotts, Monitor Coatings, Metallisation, Ecka Granules and ADAS) and evaluated the performance of thermal spray coatings combined with advanced sealant technologies in specific biomass environments.
Chlorine-containing species within many biomass and waste fuels lead to corrosion and hence limit plant operating temperatures and efficiency, and discourage the use of these fuels. The project assessed several coatings based on superalloy derivatives and nanocrystalline/amorphous materials which are resistant to high temperature corrosion, and can be deposited by affordable coating processes. These sprayed coatings were sealed with advanced ceramic-based materials to mitigate erosion and slagging.
The developed coatings have enabled plant operators to double the lifetime of superheater tubes, minimise the number of unplanned shutdowns and lost days due to premature tube failures and extend their scheduled maintenance intervals, thus making significant financial savings whilst securing energy supplies.
Further work is on-going within the Core Research Programme to develop coatings for more severe biomass and waste-to-energy applications. Partners are sought for joint industry and collaborative projects to develop further and commercialise the coatings.
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