Integration of Sensors Through Additive Manufacturing Leading to Increased Efficiencies of Gas Turbines for Power Generation and Propulsion
Pennsylvania State University is developing a novel manufacturing process that prints integrated sensors into complex systems such as gas turbine hot section parts for real time monitoring. Incorporating these durable, integrated sensors into the geometry would provide critical knowledge of key operating conditions such as temperature of key components and their thermal heat fluxes. These sensors enable the unique possibility to gain direct knowledge of critical parameters currently inferred with only varying degrees of success. This innovation—developed in partnership with Georgia Institute of Technology, CVD MesoScribe Technologies Corporation, Siemens, and United Technologies Corporation—will enable condition-based maintenance and find use in myriad applications, from energy production to aircraft propulsion.
With real-time sensing data from additively manufactured components, turbine manufacturers will realize:
Reduced component failures and asset downtime
Higher efficiencies, resulting in reduced carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels
A 30-50% acceleration in the development of high efficiency gas turbine components due to a reduction in the time needed for component risk assessment under actual operating conditions