Constituent Particles and Dispersoids in an Al-Mn-Fe-Si Alloy Studied in Three-Dimensions by Serial Sectioning
Second phase particles in wrought aluminium alloys are crucial in controlling recrystallization and texture. In Al-Mn-Fe-Si (3xxx) alloys, the size, spacing, and distribution of both large constituent particles and small dispersoids are manipulated by heat treatment to obtain the required final microstructure and texture for operations such as can-making. Understanding how these particles evolve as a function of process conditions is thus critical to optimize alloy performance. In this study, a novel 3-dimensional technique involving serial sectioning in the scanning electron microscope (SEM) has been used to analyse the intermetallic particles found in an as-cast and homogenized Al-Mn-Fe-Si alloy. This has allowed an accurate determination of the size and shape of the constituent particles and dispersoids derived from a 3-dimensional dataset. It is demonstrated that a proper consideration of the 3-dimensional microstructure reveals important features that are not obvious from 2-dimensional sections alone.
Ian Stone, Brian McKay and Zhongyun Fan
L. Dwyer et al., "Constituent Particles and Dispersoids in an Al-Mn-Fe-Si Alloy Studied in Three-Dimensions by Serial Sectioning", Materials Science Forum, Vol. 765, pp. 451-455, 2013