Ultra-High Temperature Thermal Barrier Coatings

Period of Performance: 01/01/2012 - 12/31/2012


Phase 1 STTR

Recipient Firm

Hifunda, Llc
421 Wakara Way Ste 300
Salt Lake City, UT 84108
Principal Investigator
Firm POC

Research Institution

University of Connecticut
Office for Sponsored Programs 438 Whitney Rd. Ext., U-1133
Storrs, CT 06269


The US Department of Energy has a stated goal to increase the energy efficiency of turbines, and one well recognized method of achieving this is through the use of ceramic thermal barrier coatings (TBCs). However, state of the art zirconia-based TBCs have a temperature limit of about 1200oC, and new TBC materials that can operate at elevated temperatures of 1300oC and above are needed to continue to push turbine operating temperatures further up and achieve the associated energy efficiency gains. HiFunda LLC and the University of Connecticut will team to demonstrate an advanced thermal barrier coating (TBC), consisting of a new top coat chemistry of yttrium aluminum garnet (YAG), that has lower thermal conductivity, higher use temperature, greater erosion resistance, and improved sintering resistance compared with the widely used yttria partially stabilized zirconia (YSZ) top coats. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits: The novel thermal barrier coatings developed through this program can be an enabling technology for highly efficient next generation gas turbines. Partnering with leading US gas turbine equipment manufacturers, the proposed technology can be accelerated into the market with the result of reducing energy costs, helping to maintain the US leadership position in the global gas turbine market, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.