Recent advancements in cold spray technology are dramatically expanding what you can do with thermal spray processes. Cold spray can be used to deposit metals on sensitive or difficult-to-weld surfaces for never before possible combinations of unique materials. Cold spray can also be used to repair damaged areas of a finished part, without causing additional problems such as warping, cracking, or softening of the part. Furthermore, properties approaching, or in some cases even exceeding, the base material properties can now be achieved. This opens the door for cold spray to be used on more than just cosmetic surface restoration, but loaded areas can be repaired, including rebuilding entire features on a part.
Cold spray has been applied to numerous high strength aluminum parts, but it has also been used to deposit stainless steel and other high strength steels, bronze alloys, nickel alloys, titanium, and even exotic elements like tantalum and niobium. Cold spray doesn’t fix everything, but it has the ability to solve challenges that other technologies simply can’t touch. And just as importantly, once a cold spray process has been developed, it can be applied reliably and repeatedly for a given application.