Tape Path Wear Indicator
Original Publication Date: 1985-Mar-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-18
Ta2O5 coatings act as a unique indicator of thickness by means of changes which are very distinct in light interference fringes. As a means of evaluating wear areas in any mechanical assembly a tantalum or tantulum coated part could be substituted if of an exact form factor, oxidized appropriately, thereby giving a means of initially evaluating rubbing surfaces, edge effects, locating problems, etc. The oxide thickness would be determined exactly since it is voltage limited when formed, i.e., a 50-volt coating self-limits. The striking interference fringes of Ta2O5 would then offer a practical and very fast means of indicating thickness changes in Ta2O5.