Microstructure and Mechanical Properties of Al/Sicp Composites with Multimodal Size Distribution of Reinforcements
The effect of particle size distribution and particle size ratio of SiCp in SiCp/SiO2 preforms on the microstructure, microhardness of SiCp reinforcements, modulus of rupture, and superficial hardness of Al/SiCp composites produced by pressureless infiltration has been investigated. SiCp/SiO2 preforms in the form of plates (4cm x 3cm x 0.5cm) have been pressureless infiltrated by the alloy Al-15.52 Mg-13.62 Si (wt. %) at 1100 oC for 60 min under inert atmosphere. SiC powders with average particle size of 10, 68 and 140 μm are mixed with SiO2 powders and preforms of 40 % porosity with unimodal, bimodal and trimodal size distributions are prepared by uniaxial compaction. The bimodal (small: large) and trimodal (small: medium: large) preforms are prepared with different particle size ratios in the following levels: 1:1, 3:1, 1:3, 2:2:2, 3:2:1, 3:1:2. Results from characterization by XRD, SEM and energy dispersive X-ray spectrometry show that the typical microstructure of the composites contains the MgAl2O4 (spinel), AlN and MgO phases formed during processing as well as partially reacted silica, SiC, Si and Al. It is found that the density, reinforcement microhardness, modulus of rupture and superficial hardness of the composites increase all with wider particle size distribution. However, whilst the modulus of rupture is mainly affected on going from unimodal and bimodal to trimodal distribution, superficial hardness and microhardness are mostly influenced on going from unimodal to bimodal and trimodal distribution.
H. Balmori-Ramirez, J.G. Cabañas-Moreno, H.A. Calderon-Benavides, K. Ishizaki and A. Salinas-Rodriguez
M. Montoya-Dávila et al., "Microstructure and Mechanical Properties of Al/Sicp Composites with Multimodal Size Distribution of Reinforcements", Materials Science Forum, Vol. 560, pp. 115-120, 2007