Chemical supercritical fluid infiltration of pyrocarbon with thermal gradients : deposition kinetics and multiphysics modeling Article - Janvier 2022

Gerard Vignoles, Gaetan Talue, Quentin Badey, Alain Guette, Rene Pailler, Yann Le Petitcorps, Laurence Maille

Gerard Vignoles, Gaetan Talue, Quentin Badey, Alain Guette, Rene Pailler, Yann Le Petitcorps, Laurence Maille, « Chemical supercritical fluid infiltration of pyrocarbon with thermal gradients : deposition kinetics and multiphysics modeling  », Journal of Composites Science, janvier 2022, p. 20. ISSN 2504-477X. 〈https://www.mdpi.com/2504-477X/6/1/20〉

Abstract

The chemical supercritical fluid infiltration process is a recent variation of the chemical vapor infiltration (CVI) process that allows rapid and efficient manufacturing of ceramic-matrix composites (CMCs), albeit still needing optimization. This article proposes a quantitative assessment of the process dynamics through experiments and modeling. The kinetics of carbon deposition were determined through two sets of experiments : CVD on a single filament at pressures between 10 and 50 bar and infiltration at pressures ranging between 50 and 120 bar. The CVI experiments were conducted under important thermal gradients and were interpreted using a model-based reconstitution of these gradients. We found that (i) the kinetic law has to incorporate the potential effect of the reverse reaction (i.e., etching of C by H2) ; (ii) the activation energy and pre-exponential factor both decrease with pressure up to 50 bar, then remain roughly constant, and (iii) although the apparent activation energy is modest, a favorable situation occurs in which an infiltration front builds up and travels from the hottest to the coldest part of the preform due to the presence of sufficient heat flux. A numerical simulation of the process, based on the solution of momentum, heat, and mass balance equations, fed with appropriate laws for the effective transfer properties of the porous medium and their evolution with infiltration progress, was performed and validated by comparing the simulated and actual infiltration profiles.

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