Damaging of Ultrasonic Horn for Semisolid Feedstock Production
Ultrasound treatment is one of the known method to obtain the globular microstructure for semisolid processing of aluminum alloys. Notwithstanding the numerous advantages, the main industrial limit of this method is the low service life of the horn due to the combined hot corrosion and erosion phenomena. Various approaches are reported in literature to overcome this problem, but a real satisfactory option does not seem to be available yet. In this paper, the behavior of a H11 tool steel sonotrode coated with a thin layer of TiAlCN is investigated and compared with the performance of an uncoated steel one. The lifetime of the horn was evaluated in terms of effectiveness in semisolid feedstock material preparation. For this purpose, the microstructure of semisolid cast samples obtained after different working times was analyses by optical and scanning electron microscopy. Moreover, melt contaminations due to the probe dissolution were also evaluated. The applied coating exhibited a significant resistance to separate hot corrosion in liquid Al alloy and cavitation erosion phenomena in water. However, the combined effect of the two damaging mechanisms during ultrasound treatment of the molten alloy leaded to coating removal and to a horn consumption comparable to that of bare steel.
Qiang Zhu, Ahmed Rassili, Stephen P. Midson and Xiao Gang Hu
L. Montesano et al., "Damaging of Ultrasonic Horn for Semisolid Feedstock Production", Solid State Phenomena, Vol. 285, pp. 240-246, 2019