Alloyed MCrAlY bond coats, where M is usually cobalt and/or nickel, are essential parts of modern turbine blades, imparting environmental resistance while mediating thermal expansivity differences. Nanoindentation allows the determination of their properties without the complexities of traditional mechanical tests, but was not previously possible near turbine operating temperatures.
Here, we determine the hardness and modulus of CMSX-4 and an Amdry-386 bond coat by nanoindentation up to 1000˚C. Both materials exhibit a constant hardness until 400˚C followed by considerable softening, which in CMSX-4 is attributed to the multiple slip systems operating underneath a Berkovich indenter.
The creep behaviour has been investigated via the nanoindentation hold segments. Above 700˚C, the observed creep exponents match the temperature-dependence of literature values in CMSX-4. In Amdry-386, nanoindentation produces creep exponents very close to literature data, implying high-temperature nanoindentation may be powerful in characterising these coatings and providing inputs for material, model and process optimisations.