In this work, the influence of microwave drying parameters such as irradiation time and microwave power level on the properties of synthetic moulding sands is presented. Determination of compressive strength Rc s, shear strength Rt s and permeability Ps of synthetic moulding sands with the addition of two different bentonites, after drying process with variable microwave parameters were made. The research works were carried out using the microwave oven with regulated power range of the electromagnetic field. From the results obtained, the significant influence of both drying time and microwave power level on the selected properties of moulding sands was observed. In comparison to the conventional drying method, microwave drying allows to obtain higher compressive strength of the synthetic moulding sand. The influence of application microwave irradiation on permeability was not observed. Higher strength characteristics and shorter drying time are major advantages of application of the electromagnetic irradiation for drying of the synthetic moulding sand with regard to conventional drying method.
Magnesium alloys due to their low density and high strength-to-weight ratio are promising material for the automotive and aerospace industries. Many elements made from magnesium alloys are produced by means of sand casting. It is essential to investigate impact of the applied mould components on the microstructure and the quality of the castings. For the research, six identical, 100x50x20mm plates has been sand cast from the Elektron 21 magnesium casting alloy. Each casting was fed and cooled in a different way: one, surrounded by mould sand, two with cast iron chills 20mm and 40mm thick applied, another two with the same chills as well as feeders applied and one with only the feeder applied. Solid solution grain size and eutectics volume fraction were evaluated quantitatively in Met-Ilo program, casting defects were observed on the scanning electron microscope Hitachi S3400N. The finest solid solution grain was observed in the castings with only the chills applied. Non metallic inclusions were observed in each plate. The smallest shrinkage porosity was observed in the castings with the feeders applied.