Insulated Rail Joints for Signalling Applications


Article Preview

Insulated rail joint assemblies provide electrical insulation between two sections of rail for signalling purposes. In this work, rail steel was successfully bonded to PSZ ceramic using an active brazing technique. In order to increase the wettability of the PSZ ceramics, titanium coating was deposited on the ceramic surface using a filtered arc deposition system. A filler metal called BVAg-18 (60%Ag-30%Cu-10%Sn) was used and the joining was performed at a temperature of 750 °C. Bonding between partially stabilised zirconia and rail steel with BVAg-18 filler metal was not achieved using a standard brazing method. Bonding did occur with the BVAg-18 filler metal using the advanced brazing technique of active metal brazing, with best results obtained using a brazing temperature of 750oC and a dwell time of 10 minutes. The microstructure of the coating and joint interface were characterised by XRD, SEM and EDS.



Materials Science Forum (Volumes 539-543)

Main Theme:

Edited by:

T. Chandra, K. Tsuzaki, M. Militzer , C. Ravindran




S.W. Huang et al., "Insulated Rail Joints for Signalling Applications", Materials Science Forum, Vols. 539-543, pp. 4069-4074, 2007

Online since:

March 2007




[1] E.P. Butler, Transformation-toughened zirconia ceramics. Mat. Sci. Techn. 1 (1985), pp.417-432.

[2] H. Mizuhara, and T. Oyama, Ceramic/metal seals. In: Engineered Materials Handbook, Ceramic and Glasses. Vol. 4, ed. H. F. Lampman and N. D. Wheaton. ASM International, USA, 1991, pp.502-510.

[3] K. Suganuma, Recent Advances in joining technology of ceramics to metals, review. ISIJ International, 30, 12 (1990), pp.1046-1058. PSZ Ag-Cu-Sn Rail Steel.

DOI: 10.2355/isijinternational.30.1046

[4] S. D. Peteves, M. Paulasto, G. Ceccone and M.G. Nicholas, Ceramic/metal reactions and microstructures in ceramic joints. In: A.P. Tomsia and A.M. Glaeser, Editors, Ceramic Microstructure: Control at the Atomic Level, Plenum Press, New York (1998).

DOI: 10.1007/978-1-4615-5393-9_33

[5] A. J. Moorhead and H. -E. Kim, Joining oxide ceramics. In: Engineered Materials Handbook, Ceramic and Glasses. Vol. 4, ed. H. F. Lampman and N. D. Wheaton. ASM International, USA, 1991, pp.511-522.

[6] K. Suganuma, Joining non-oxide ceramics. In: Engineered Materials Handbook, Ceramic and Glasses. Vol. 4, ed. H. F. Lampman and N. D. Wheaton. ASM International, USA, 1991, pp.523-531.

[7] A. P. Tomsia and R.E. Loehman, Reactions and microstructure at selected ceramic/metal interfaces. Mat. and Manufact. Processes, 9, 3 (1994), pp.547-561.

DOI: 10.1080/10426919408934924

[8] A. P. Tomsia, E. Saiz, S. Foppiano and R. M. Cannon, Reactive wetting in ceramic/metal systems. In: P. Vincenzini, Editor, Proceedings of the 9th Cimtec-World Ceramics Congress, Ceramics: Getting into the 2000's-Part C, Techna srl, Italy (1999).

[8] N. Iwamoto and H. Yokoo, Joining of zirconia using zirconium-based alloys. J. Mater. Sci., 27, (1992), pp.441-447.

DOI: 10.1007/bf00543935

[9] B. Derby and C. -D. Qin, The Role of the interface in metal/ceramic diffusion bonding. In: S.D. Peteves, Editor, Designing Ceramic Interfaces II, Elsevier Applied Science, UK (1993), pp.389-398.

[10] C. Colin, D. Broussaud, F. Grivon, and A. Wicker, Solid-state bonding of partially stabilized zirconia to metals. In Ceramic Materials and Components for Engines. Elsevier Applied Science, UK, 1992, pp.492-502.

[11] C. -D. Qin and B. Derby, Diffusion bonding of a nickel (chromium) alloy to zirconia: mechanical properties and interface microstructures. J. Mater. Sci., 28, (1993), pp.4366-4374.

DOI: 10.1007/bf01154944

[12] J. -D. Mun, B. Derby and A. P. Sutton, Texture change in Ni and Cu foils on diffusion bonding to zirconia. Scripta Mater., 36, 1 (1997), pp.1-6.

DOI: 10.1016/s1359-6462(96)00330-2

[13] M.G. Nicholas, Active metal brazing. In: M. Nicholas, Editor, Joining of Ceramics, Chapman and Hall, Great Britain (1990), pp.73-93.

[14] K. Suganuma, T. Okamoto, M. Koizumi and M. Shimada, Solid-state bonding of partially stabilized zirconia to steel with titanium interlayer. J. Mat. Sci. Lett., 5, (1989), pp.1099-1100.

DOI: 10.1007/bf01742211

[15] H. Hao, Y. Wang, Z. Jin and X. Wang, Joining of ziconia to stainless steel and to itself using Ag57Cu38Ti5 filler metal. J. Am. Ceram. Soc., 78, 8 (1995), pp.2157-2160.

DOI: 10.1111/j.1151-2916.1995.tb08629.x

[16] J.P. Hammond, S.A. David, and M. L Santella, Brazing Ceramic Oxides to Metals at Low Temperatures,. Welding Research Supplement, 1988. pp.227-32.

[17] S.W. Huang, et al., Wear, 252, 2002, pp.566-579.

Fetching data from Crossref.
This may take some time to load.