Turbine tests

A NorthumbriaUniversityacademic has won a prestigious award worth almost £1/4 million that could bring major benefits to the aerospace industry.


Dr. Hailang Du, a researcher in the Advanced Materials Research Institute (AMRI), part of the School of Computing, Engineering & Information Sciences, won the Marie Curie International Incoming Fellowship Award, worth £230,000, to investigate new methods of designing coatings to prevent corrosion in gas turbine engines.


The engines, typically used in the aerospace industry, are subject to corrosion due to the high temperatures they are placed under.


Engines in an aircraft often reach temperatures of 1000° C. At such levels they will oxidise and corrode if they are not properly protected.


AMRI is currently investigating new methods of coating the engines which can prolong their lifespan to over 3,000 hours of use.


The Award will allow Dr. Du to bring an Indian scientist, Dr. Injeti Gurrappa, to AMRI for two years to carry out research on the design and development of smart coatings.


The Marie Curie International Incoming Fellowships are very prestigious and competitive which attract top-class researchers to work in Europe.


Dr. Du said: “The successful award of this Fellowship is in recognition of AMRI’s research in this field and I believe it is probably the first time that Northumbria has won such an important award.


“The funding will allow us to use multiple surface engineering techniques together with optimised coating compositions to effectively combat oxidisation and hot corrosion by creating a more stable oxide scale at a wide temperature range for gas turbine engines.”


“If we can improve the thermo efficiency of the engines we can also reduce their consumption of fuel, therefore reducing their CO2 emissions and helping the environment.”


The award was funded by the European Commission within the 6FW programme.