Fabrication of Metal Matrix Composites under Intensive Shearing
Current processing methods for metal matrix composites (MMC) often produces agglomerated reinforced particles in the ductile matrix and also form unwanted brittle secondary phases due to chemical reaction between matrix and the reinforcement. As a result they exhibit extremely low ductility. In addition to the low ductility, the current processing methods are not economical for producing engineering components. In this paper we demonstrate that these problems can be solved to a certain extent by a novel rheo-process. The key step in this process is application of sufficient shear stress on particulate clusters embedded in liquid metal to overcome the average cohesive force of the clusters. Very high shear stress can be achieved by using the specially designed twin-screw machine, developed at Brunel University, in which the liquid undergoes high shear stress and high intensity of turbulence. Experiments with Al alloys and SiC reinforcement reveal that, under high shear stress and turbulence conditions Al liquid penetrates into the clusters and disperse the individual particle within the cluster, thus leading to a uniform microstructure.
G. Hirt, A. Rassili, A. Bührig-Polaczek
N. Hari Babu et al., "Fabrication of Metal Matrix Composites under Intensive Shearing", Solid State Phenomena, Vols. 141-143, pp. 373-378, 2008