William Goodrum, Ph.D.
Elder Research, Inc.
Increasing performance and efficiency demands for gas turbine engines (GTE) have led to consequently elevated operating temperatures. Higher temperatures have increased susceptibility of Ni-based superalloy parts to “hot corrosion” caused in part by sulfate impurities in air and fuel. Pits associated with hot corrosion can form growing cracks that lead to component failure. GTE OEMs have limited or no ability to predict why or how quickly hot corrosion of Ni-based superalloy components will occur. This means hot corrosion is often identified unexpectedly during routine maintenance leading to higher than anticipated maintenance costs for operators. GTE development costs are also high, since it is difficult to know without expensive validation testing whether changes to turbine materials will mitigate hot corrosion.
In response to this need, we have developed HOTPITS. HOTPITS is a modular, physics-based capability for predicting hot corrosion of Ni-based superalloy components. HOTPITS predicts corrosion onset, development, and remaining useful component life, and is implemented in the widely-adopted DARWIN probabilistic modeling software. HOTPITS is flexible to be customizable to material systems subject to hot corrosion. HOTPITS is part of ongoing R&D through the NASA STTR program, in partnership with Southwest Research Institute and Rolls-Royce.
In addition to discussing HOTPITS, I will also provide a general overview to R&D at Elder Research, including some new avenues of research that we are interested in exploring in 2021.
Materials Science & Engineering Dept.