The ATTAP aims at proving the performance and life of structural ceramic components in the hot gas path of an automotive gas turbine engine. This Department of Energy (DOE)-sponsored, NASA-managed program is being addressed by a General Motors (GM) team drawing expertise from the Advanced Engineering Staff (AES) and from Allison. The program includes design, process development and fabrication, rig and engine testing, and iterative development of selected key ceramic components for the AGT-5 engine. A reference powertrain design (RPD) based on this engine predicts acceleration, driveability, and fuel economy characteristics exceeding those of both current engines and the DOE goals.
A low-apsect-ratio ceramic turbine rotor design has been successfully engine-demonstrated at 2200°F and 100% speed, including survival of impact and other hostile flow path conditions. Turbine flow path components have been designed for the 2500°F cycle, using improved monolithic ceramics targeted for Year 2 fabrication. Major development/fabrication efforts have been subcontracted at Carborundum, GTE Labs, Corning Glass, Garrett Ceramic Components, and Manville. Feasibility studies were initiated with Ceramics Process Systems and Drexel University.