Compliance with incoming new emission standards such as Euro6d and China6b will require new approaches to the design of thermally loaded automotive components e.g. turbochargers, exhaust valves and manifolds. However, the validation of those new designs and the need for a rapid market entry will require new temperature measurement technologies to provide accurate data across the entire component. A limited number of techniques are currently available, and all have limitations in the harsh operating conditions of turbomachinery. A new technique, called Thermal History Paint (THP), has been developed to overcome these limitations to enable accurate temperature profiles to be recorded in harsh environments. There are limited publications that cover the use of this technique and this paper demonstrates the capability of the THP through the implementation on turbocharger turbine wheels.

A cooled, hollow radial turbine wheel was designed, manufactured via 3D printing and tested. A solid wheel of the same external dimensions was manufactured and tested under the same conditions to act as a baseline. The THP was used to measure the temperature profile of the blade surfaces and to quantify the effectiveness of the cooling. The paint exhibited good durability through the tests of both wheels in a hot gas rig at the University of Bath.

Specific calibration data were generated for the test and the repeatability of the measurements was determined to be within 8K. Both the cooled and baseline wheels were measured at many locations and the THP recorded a significantly higher temperature on the baseline solid wheel. The measured temperature profiles were in good agreement with expectation and CFD simulations. The results enable the validation of thermal models and demonstrate the capability of the new measurement technique.

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