Metals2014, 4(1), 55-63; doi:10.3390/met4010055 - published online 27 February 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: The effect of the deformation route on the microstructural evolution of low CN Fe-20%Cr alloy by ECAP has been investigated, with a focus on the anisotropy of the microstructure. This alloy was pressed at 423 K from one, two and four passes via routes A, Bc and C, and the microstructure was observed three dimensionally. As has been acknowledged, overall grain fragmentation proceeded most effectively in route Bc, and the highest hardness was obtained following routes C and A. However, the degree of anisotropy of microstructural development is different among the three deformation routes. The fractions of the high angle grain boundary (HAGB) and mean grain boundary misorientation were high and nearly isotropic in route Bc, whereas they are considerably low in one direction and highly anisotropic in routes A and C. Most importantly, those two parameters and hardness are the highest in route C if limited to the transverse direction, i.e., normal to both the insert and extruding directions. This result contrasts with FCC materials which most papers report as having the highest fraction of HAGB in route Bc. This result can be interpreted by the slip irreversibility of screw dislocations which is predominant in BCC metals.
Metals2014, 4(1), 37-54; doi:10.3390/met4010037 - published online 7 February 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: An accumulative swaging and bundling technique is used to prepare composite wires made of Ti and an Al alloy. These wires show reasonable higher yield stresses than expected from the pure material flow curves. The additional strengthening in the composite is analyzed using nanoindentation measurements, tensile testings and investigations of the microstructure. In addition, these properties are analyzed in relation to the fracture surface of the mechanically tested wires. Additional strengthening due to the presence of phase boundaries could be verified. Indications for residual stresses are found that cause a global hardness gradient from the center to the wire rim. Finally, the yield stress of the wires are calculated based on local hardness measurements.
Metals2014, 4(1), 28-36; doi:10.3390/met4010028 - published online 27 January 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: The microstructure and mechanical properties of Al-20Si produced by selective laser melting (SLM) are investigated for different heat treatment conditions. As a result of the high cooling rate during processing, the as-built SLM material displays a microstructure consisting of a supersaturated Al(Si) solid solution along with heavily refined eutectic Si and Si particles. The Si particles become coarser, and the eutectic Si gradually changes its morphology from fibrous to plate-like shape with increasing annealing temperature. The microstructural variations occurring during heat treatment significantly affect the mechanical behavior of the samples. The yield and ultimate strengths decrease from 374 and 506 MPa for the as-built SLM material to 162 and 252 MPa for the sample annealed at 673 K, whereas the ductility increases from 1.6 to 8.7%. This offers the possibility to tune microstructure and corresponding properties of the Al-20Si SLM parts to meet specific requirements.
Metals2014, 4(1), 20-27; doi:10.3390/met4010020 - published online 22 January 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: MnAl is a promising rare-earth free permanent magnet for technological use. We have examined the effects of consolidation by back-pressure, assisted equal channel angular extrusion processing on mechanically-milled, gas-atomized Mn-46% at. Al powder. X-ray diffraction showed both that the extruded rod consisted mostly of metastable τ phase, with some of the equilibrium γ2 and β phases, and that it largely retained the as-milled nanostructure. Magnetic measurements show a coercivity of ≤4.4 kOe and a magnetization at 10 kOe of ≤40 emu/g. In addition, extrusions exhibit greater than 95% of the theoretical density. This study opens a new window in the area of bulk MnAl magnets with improved magnetic properties for technological use.
Metals2014, 4(1), 8-19; doi:10.3390/met4010008 - published online 21 January 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Magnetic and structural aspects of the annealing-induced transformation of rapidly-solidified Mn55Al45 ribbons from the as-quenched metastable antiferromagnetic (AF) ε-phase to the target ferromagnetic (FM) L10 τ-phase are investigated. The as-solidified material exhibits a majority hexagonal ε-MnAl phase revealing a large exchange bias shift below a magnetic blocking temperature TB~95 K (Hex~13 kOe at 10 K), ascribed to the presence of compositional fluctuations in this antiferromagnetic phase. Heat treatment at a relatively low annealing temperature Tanneal ≈ 568 K (295 °C) promotes the nucleation of the metastable L10 τ-MnAl phase at the expense of the parent ε-phase, donating an increasingly hard ferromagnetic character. The onset of the ε→τ transformation occurs at a temperature that is ~100 K lower than that reported in the literature, highlighting the benefits of applying rapid solidification for synthesis of the rapidly-solidified parent alloy.