Dennis Fox and Michael Cuy were kind enough to spare their busy schedules to give the NASA interns a tour on the Burner Rig Materials Testing Facility. The Burner Rig Facility consists of seven test cells, with a total of eight burners and a ballistic impact device. Kerosene is used as the fuel, and when burned, the hot gases exhaust from the burners with a speed of approximately 100 m/s. It is a cost-efficient facility, due to its low fuel consumption of 2-3 gallons of fuel per hour.
The purpose of the Burner Rig Facility is to test advanced materials such as super alloys, advanced ceramics, and protective coatings. Oxidation, corrosion, erosion, and impact are various forms of testing that can be performed on these materials. There were two specific types of testing that have recently been performed in the lab. One is a ceramic-based environmental barrier coating and the second is a silicone-based thermal barrier coating. Samples of these materials before and after testing were displayed to the interns to show effects of oxidation, corrosion, erosion, and impact on aircraft, spacecraft and engine components.