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The Hardness and Strength Properties of WC-Co Composites

Center for Energetic Concepts Development, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742, USA
Materials 2011, 4(7), 1287-1308; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma4071287
Received: 8 June 2011 / Revised: 4 July 2011 / Accepted: 6 July 2011 / Published: 14 July 2011
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hard Materials: Advances in Synthesis and Understanding)
The industrially-important WC-Co composite materials provide a useful, albeit complicated materials system for understanding the combined influences on hardness and strength properties of the constituent WC particle strengths, the particle sizes, their contiguities, and of Co binder hardness and mean free paths, and in total, the volume fraction of constituents. A connection is made here between the composite material properties, especially including the material fracture toughness, and the several materials-type considerations of: (1) related hardness stress-strain behaviors; (2) dislocation (viscoplastic) thermal activation characterizations; (3) Hall-Petch type reciprocal square root of particle or grain size dependencies; and (4) indentation and conventional fracture mechanics results. Related behaviors of MgO and Al2O3 crystal and polycrystal materials are also described for the purpose of making comparisons. View Full-Text
Keywords: hardness; cracking; indentation fracture mechanics; dislocations; fracture stress; stress intensity; WC-Co composite; cemented carbide; WC; MgO; Al2O3; toughness; Hall-Petch relation; contiguity hardness; cracking; indentation fracture mechanics; dislocations; fracture stress; stress intensity; WC-Co composite; cemented carbide; WC; MgO; Al2O3; toughness; Hall-Petch relation; contiguity
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Armstrong, R.W. The Hardness and Strength Properties of WC-Co Composites. Materials 2011, 4, 1287-1308.

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