Thermal isolation of steel pipelines employed in the transportation of hot fluids from thermal sprayed coatings

Daniel García-Muñoz, Fabio Vargas-Galvis


Ceramic coatings of Al2O3, Al2O3-TiO2, and Al2O3-ZrO2 commercial powders were thermally sprayed on the external surface of ASTM A106 Grade-B carbon steel pipelines (with and without a bond coat of a commercial nickel alloy) to reduce the loss of heat contained in hot fluids that are transported through this kind of ducts. The bond coat, as well as the ceramic coatings, were deposited by means of oxy-acetylene thermal spray; afterwards, the heat transfer in transitory state was evaluated by placing heated silicone oil at 160°C inside the pipelines. The temperature variation over time of the silicone oil and the external wall of each pipeline was measured. Besides the low thermal conductivity of the ceramic materials, a thicker and more porous coating provides a more effective means for thermal isolation. Additionally, the bond coat acts as a thermal resistance, which consumes heat and contributes to the reduction of the superficial temperature of the pipeline.


Thermal spray; barrier coatings; pipelines; hot fluids; bond coat.

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