Physical Sciences Inc. (PSI) has been awarded a research program from the U.S. Air Force, Wright-Patterson AFB, to develop a high throughput, non-destructive technology for characterizing the surface and the coatings of high temperature ceramic matrix composites (CMCs) used for hypersonic applications. At velocities above Mach 5, CMCs are exposed to high heat flux and wind shear and thus special post-manufacturing coatings are required to protect them from oxidation and ablation. Therefore, the characterization of CMC roughness and surface chemistry is very important during various phases of the manufacturing process.
PSI’s technology will combine the high resolution surface roughness measurement capability of Scanning Low Coherence Interferometry (SLCI) with the powerful surface chemistry characterization capability offered by Raman spectroscopy to perform non-destructive evaluation of CMC roughness and surface composition. This tool will enable timely detection of structural and chemical defects that may be corrected, resulting in substantial savings in fabrication costs. Currently, non-destructive evaluation techniques are available only for laboratory use and are not suitable for use during the manufacturing processes.
For more information, contact:
Dr. Nick Iftimia
Area Manager, Biomedical Optics Technology
Physical Sciences Inc.
Telephone: (978) 689-0003