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Open AccessArticle

On the Alloying and Properties of Tetragonal Nb5Si3 in Nb-Silicide Based Alloys

Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Sheffield, Sheffield S1 3JD, UK
Materials 2018, 11(1), 69;
Received: 1 December 2017 / Revised: 21 December 2017 / Accepted: 22 December 2017 / Published: 4 January 2018
The alloying of Nb5Si3 modifies its properties. Actual compositions of (Nb,TM)5X3 silicides in developmental alloys, where X = Al + B + Ge + Si + Sn and TM is a transition and/or refractory metal, were used to calculate the composition weighted differences in electronegativity (Δχ) and an average valence electron concentration (VEC) and the solubility range of X to study the alloying and properties of the silicide. The calculations gave 4.11 < VEC < 4.45, 0.103 < Δχ < 0.415 and 33.6 < X < 41.6 at.%. In the silicide in Nb-24Ti-18Si-5Al-5Cr alloys with single addition of 5 at.% B, Ge, Hf, Mo, Sn and Ta, the solubility range of X decreased compared with the unalloyed Nb5Si3 or exceeded 40.5 at.% when B was with Hf or Mo or Sn and the Δχ decreased with increasing X. The Ge concentration increased with increasing Ti and the Hf concentration increased and decreased with increasing Ti or Nb respectively. The B and Sn concentrations respectively decreased and increased with increasing Ti and also depended on other additions in the silicide. The concentration of Sn was related to VEC and the concentrations of B and Ge were related to Δχ. The alloying of Nb5Si3 was demonstrated in Δχ versus VEC maps. Effects of alloying on the coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) anisotropy, Young’s modulus, hardness and creep data were discussed. Compared with the hardness of binary Nb5Si3 (1360 HV), the hardness increased in silicides with Ge and dropped below 1360 HV when Al, B and Sn were present without Ge. The Al effect on hardness depended on other elements substituting Si. Sn reduced the hardness. Ti or Hf reduced the hardness more than Cr in Nb5Si3 without Ge. The (Nb,Hf)5(Si,Al)3 had the lowest hardness. VEC differentiated the effects of additions on the hardness of Nb5Si3 alloyed with Ge. Deterioration of the creep of alloyed Nb5Si3 was accompanied by decrease of VEC and increase or decrease of Δχ depending on alloying addition(s). View Full-Text
Keywords: silicides; intermetallics; alloying; hardness; creep silicides; intermetallics; alloying; hardness; creep
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Tsakiropoulos, P. On the Alloying and Properties of Tetragonal Nb5Si3 in Nb-Silicide Based Alloys. Materials 2018, 11, 69.

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