The paper presents the results of research of impact strength of aluminum alloy EN AC-44200 based composite materials reinforced with alumina particles. The research was carried out applying the materials produced by the pressure infiltration method of ceramic preforms made of Al2O3 particles of 3-6m with the liquid EN AC-44200 Al alloy. The research was aimed at determining the composite resistance to dynamic loads, taking into account the volume of reinforcing particles (from 10 to 40% by volume) at an ambient of 23°C and at elevated temperatures to a maximum of 300°C. The results of this study were referred to the unreinforced matrix EN AC-44200 and to its hardness and tensile strength. Based on microscopic studies, an analysis and description of crack mechanics of the tested materials were performed. Structural analysis of a fracture surface, material structures under the crack surfaces of the matrix and cracking of the reinforcing particles were performed.
The paper presents results of bend tests at elevated temperatures of aluminium alloy EN AC-44200 (AlSi12) based composite materials reinforced with aluminium oxide particles. The examined materials were manufactured by squeeze casting. Preforms made of Al2O3 particles, with volumetric fraction 10, 20, 30 and 40 vol.% of particles joined with sodium silicate bridges were used as reinforcement. The preforms were characterised by open porosity ensuring proper infiltration with the EN AC-44200 (AlSi12) liquid alloy. The largest bending strength was found for the materials containing 40 vol.% of reinforcing ceramic particles, tested at ambient temperature. At increased test temperature, bending strength Rg of composites decreased in average by 30 to 50 MPa per 100°C of temperature increase. Temperature increase did not significantly affect cracking of the materials. Cracks propagated mainly along the interfaces particle/matrix, with no effect of the particles falling-out from fracture surfaces. Direction of cracking can be affected by a small number of agglomerations of particles or of non-reacted binder. In the composites, the particles strongly restrict plastic deformation of the alloy, which leads to creation of brittle fractures. At elevated temperatures, however mainly at 200 and 300°C, larger numbers of broken, fragmented particles was observed in the vicinity of cracks. Fragmentation of particles occurred mainly at tensioned side of the bended specimens, in the materials with smaller fraction of Al2O3 reinforcement, i.e. 10 and 20 vol.%.
The paper presents results of compressive strength investigations of EN AC-44200 based aluminum alloy composite materials reinforced with aluminum oxide particles at ambient and at temperatures of 100, 200 and 250C. They were manufactured by squeeze casting of the porous preforms made of α-Al2O3 particles with liquid aluminum alloy EN AC-44200. The composite materials were reinforced with preforms characterized by the porosities of 90, 80, 70 and 60 vol. %, thus the alumina content in the composite materials was 10, 20, 30 and 40 vol.%. The results of the compressive strength of manufactured materials were presented and basing on the microscopic observations the effect of the volume content of strengthening alumina particles on the cracking mechanisms during compression at indicated temperatures were shown and discussed. The highest compressive strength of 470 MPa at ambient temperature showed composite materials strengthened with 40 vol.% of α-Al2O3 particles.
The aim of this work is the development of Cu-Al2O3 composites of copper Cu-ETP matrix composite materials reinforced by 20 and 30 vol.% Al2O3 particles and study of some chosen physical properties. Squeeze casting technique of porous compacts with liquid copper was applied at the pressure of 110 MPa. Introduction of alumina particles into copper matrix affected on the significant increase of hardness and in the case of Cu-30 vol. % of alumina particles to 128 HBW. Electrical resistivity was strongly affected by the ceramic alumina particles and addition of 20 vol. % of particles caused diminishing of electrical conductivity to 20 S/m (34.5% IACS). Thermal conductivity tests were performed applying two methods and it was ascertained that this parameter strongly depends on the ceramic particles content, diminishing it to 100 Wm-1K-1 for the composite material containing 30 vol.% of ceramic particles comparing to 400 Wm-1K-1 for the unreinforced copper. Microstructural analysis was carried out using SEM microscopy and indicates that Al2O3 particles are homogeneously distributed in the copper matrix. EDS analysis shows remains of silicon on the surface of ceramic particles after binding agent used during preparation of ceramic preforms.
Development of open cellular metal foam technology based on investment casting applying the polyurethane pattern is discussed. Technological process comprises preparing of the ceramic mold applying PUR foam as the pattern, firing of the mold, pouring of the liquid Zn-Al alloy into the mold and washing out of the ceramic material from cellular casting. Critical parameters such as the temperature of mold and poured metal, design of gating system affected by metalostatic pressure allowed to produce castings with cellular structure characterized by the open porosity. Metal cellular foams with the open porosity embedded in phase change material (PCM) enhance heat transfer and reduce time operations in energy storage systems. Charging and discharging were performed at the laboratory accumulator by heating and cooling with flowing water characterized by the temperatures of 97-100oC. Temperature measurements were collected from 7 different thermocouples located in the accumulator. In relation to the tests with pure paraffin, embedding of the metal Zn-Al cellular foam in paraffin significantly decreases temperature gradients and melting time of paraffin applied as PCM characterized by the low thermal conductivity. Similarly, reduction of discharging time by this method improves the efficiency of thermal energy storage system applied in solar power plants or for the systems of energy efficient buildings.
Bending strength, thermal and electric conductivity and microstructure examinations of Cu based composite materials reinforced with Saffil alumina fibres are presented. Materials were produced by squeeze casting method applying the designed device and specially elaborated production parameters. Applying infiltration pressure of 90MPa and suitable temperature parameters provided manufacturing of copper based composite materials strengthened with Saffil alumina fibres characterized by the low rest porosity and good fibre-matrix interface. Three point bending tests at temperatures of 25, 100 and 300ºC were performed on specimens reinforced with 10, 15 and 20% of Saffil fibres. Introduced reinforcement effected on the relatively high bending strengths at elevated temperatures. In relation to unreinforced Cu casting strength of composite material Cu – 15vol.% Saffil fibres increase by about 25%, whereas at the highest applied test temperature of 300o C the improvement was almost 100%. Fibres by strengthening of the copper matrix and by transferring loads from the matrix reduce its plastic deformation and hinder the micro-crack developed during bending tests. Decreasing of thermal and electrical conductivity of Cu after incorporating fibres in the matrix are relatively small and these properties can be acceptable for electric and thermal applications.