Microstructural Evolution of an Interface Region in a Nickel-Based Superalloy Joint Produced by Direct Energy Deposition

Microstructure analysis of additively manufactured (AM) materials is an important step in understanding the interrelationship between mechanical properties and materials performance. Literature on the effect of a laser-based AM process parameters on the microstructure in the substrate-deposit interface is limited. The interface region, the adjoining area of substrate and deposit, is characterized by the presence of the fusion zone (FZ) and heat affected zone (HAZ) experiencing rapid thermal gyrations resulting in thermal induced transformations. Inconel 718 was utilized as a work material for both the substrate and deposit. Three blocks of Inconel 718 material were deposited by Direct Energy Deposition (DED) using three different laser powers, 550W, 750W and 950W, respectively. A coupled thermo-mechanical transient approach was utilized to correlate temperature history to the evolution of microstructure. Thermal history of the deposition process was monitored with the thermocouples installed inside the substrate material. Interface region of the blocks were analysed with Optical Microscopy (OM) and Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) including electron back-scattered diffraction (EBSD) technique. Laser power was found to influence the dissolution of intermetallic precipitated phases in the substrate and grain growth in the interface region. Microstructure and thermal history data were utilized to draw conclusive comparisons between the investigated process parameters.

Characterization of a Pure Diamond-Like Carbon Film Deposited by Nanosecond Pulsed Laser Deposition

This work aims to investigate the properties and microstructure of diamond-like carbon film deposited by pulsed laser deposition by ablation of a graphite target in a vacuum chamber on a steel substrate. The equipment was mounted to provide one laser beam. The target of high purity graphite and the steel substrate were polished. The mechanical and tribological properties of the film were characterized using Raman spectroscopy, nanoindentation test, scratch test, roughness profile, tribometer, optical microscopy and SEM images. It was concluded that the pulsed laser deposition (PLD) technique associated with the low-pressure chamber and a graphite target provides a good fraction of sp3 bonding, that the process variable as surface polishing and laser parameter have great influence in tribological properties and in adherence tests performance. The optical microscopy images are efficient to identify the metallurgical bond.

Failure Analysis of a Medium Duty Vehicle Leaf Spring

This paper summarizes the work conducted to assess the root cause of the failure of a medium commercial vehicle leaf spring failed in service. Macro- and micro-fractographic analyses by scanning electron microscope as well as material verification tests were conducted in order to understand the failure mechanisms and root cause of the failure. Findings from the fractographic analyses indicated that failure mechanism is fatigue. Crack initiation was identified to have occurred from a point on the top surface near to the front face and to the left side. Two other crack initiation points were also observed, however, these cracks did not propagate. The propagation mode of the fatigue crack revealed that the cyclic loads resulting in crack initiation and propagation were unidirectional bending. Fractographic analyses have also showed that the root cause of the fatigue crack initiation and propagation was loading the part above design stress. Material properties of the part were also verified by chemical composition analysis, microstructural analysis by optical microscopy and hardness tests.

A Study on the Effect of Mg and Ag Additions and Age Hardening Treatment on the Properties of As-Cast Al-Cu-Mg-Ag Alloys

This study focuses on the effect of the addition of magnesium (Mg) and silver (Ag) on the mechanical properties of aluminum based alloys. The alloying elements will be added at different levels using the factorial design of experiments of 22; the two factors are Mg and Ag at two levels of concentration. The superior mechanical properties of the produced Al-Cu-Mg-Ag alloys after aging will be resulted from a unique type of precipitation named as Ω-phase. The formed precipitate enhanced the tensile strength and thermal stability. This paper further investigated the microstructure and mechanical properties of as cast Al–Cu–Mg–Ag alloys after being complete homogenized treatment at 520 °C for 8 hours followed by isothermally age hardening process at 190 °C for different periods of time. The homogenization at 520 °C for 8 hours was selected based on homogenization study at various temperatures and times. The alloys’ microstructures were studied by using optical microscopy (OM). In addition to that, the fracture surface investigation was performed using a scanning electronic microscope (SEM). Studying the microstructure of aged Al-Cu-Mg-Ag alloys reveal that the grains are equiaxed with an average grain size of about 50 µm. A detailed fractography study for fractured surface of the aged alloys exhibited a mixed fracture whereby the random fracture suggested crack propagation along the grain boundaries while the dimples indicated that the fracture was ductile. The present result has shown that alloy 5 has the highest hardness values and the best mechanical behaviors.

Investigation of Heat Affected Zone of Steel P92 Using the Thermal Cycle Simulator

This work is focused on mechanical properties and microstructure of heat affected zone (HAZ) of steel P92. The thermal cycle simulator was used for modeling a fine grained zone of HAZ. Hardness and impact toughness were measured on simulated samples. Microstructural analysis using optical microscopy was performed on selected samples. Achieved results were compared with the values of a real welded joint. The thermal cycle simulator allows transferring the properties of very small HAZ to the sufficiently large sample where the tests of the mechanical properties can be performed. A satisfactory accordance was found when comparing the microstructure and mechanical properties of real welds and simulated samples.

Sintering Properties of Mechanically Alloyed Ti-5Al-2.5Fe

In this study, Ti-5Al-2.5Fe alloy was prepared by powder metallurgy. The elemental titanium, aluminum, and iron powders were mechanically alloyed for 10 h in a vacuum atmosphere. A stainless steel jar and stainless steel balls were used for mechanical alloying. The alloyed powders were then sintered by vacuum hot pressing at 950 °C for a soaking time of 30 minutes. Pure titanium was also sintered at the same conditions for comparison of mechanical properties and microstructural behavior. The samples were investigated by scanning electron microscopy, XRD analysis, and optical microscopy. Results showed that, after mechanical alloying, a homogeneous distribution of the elements was obtained, and desired a-b structure was determined. Ti-5Al-2.5Fe alloy was successfully produced, and the alloy showed enhanced mechanical properties compared to the commercial pure titanium.

High Strength, High Toughness Polyhydroxybutyrate-Co-Valerate Based Biocomposites

Biocomposites is a field that has gained much scientific attention due to the current substantial consumption of non-renewable resources and the environmentally harmful disposal methods required for traditional polymer composites. Research on natural fiber reinforced polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) has gained considerable momentum over the past decade. There is little work on PHAs reinforced with unidirectional (UD) natural fibers and little work on using epoxidized natural rubber (ENR) as a toughening agent for PHA-based biocomposites. In this work, we prepared polyhydroxybutyrate-co-valerate (PHBV) biocomposites reinforced with UD 30 wt.% flax fibers and evaluated the use of ENR with 50% epoxidation (ENR50) as a toughening agent for PHBV biocomposites. Quasi-unidirectional flax/PHBV composites were prepared by hand layup, powder impregnation followed by compression molding.  Toughening agents – polybutylene adiphate-co-terephthalate (PBAT) and ENR50 – were cryogenically ground into powder and mechanically mixed with main matrix PHBV to maintain the powder impregnation process. The tensile, flexural and impact properties of the biocomposites were measured and morphology of the composites examined using optical microscopy (OM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The UD biocomposites showed exceptionally high mechanical properties as compared to the results obtained previously where only short fibers have been used. The improved tensile and flexural properties were attributed to the continuous nature of the fiber reinforcement and the increased proportion of fibers in the loading direction. The improved impact properties were attributed to a larger surface area for fiber-matrix debonding and for subsequent sliding and fiber pull-out mechanisms to act on, allowing more energy to be absorbed. Coating cryogenically ground ENR50 particles with PHBV powder successfully inhibits the self-healing nature of ENR-50, preventing particles from coalescing and overcoming problems in mechanical mixing, compounding and molding. Cryogenic grinding, followed by powder impregnation and subsequent compression molding is an effective route to the production of high-mechanical-property biocomposites based on renewable resources for high-obsolescence applications such as plastic casings for consumer electronics.

Influence of Argon Gas Concentration in N2-Ar Plasma for the Nitridation of Si in Abnormal Glow Discharge

Nitriding of p-type Si samples by pulsed DC glow discharge is carried out for different Ar concentrations (30% to 90%) in nitrogen-argon plasma whereas the other parameters like pressure (2 mbar), treatment time (4 hr) and power (175 W) are kept constant. The phase identification, crystal structure, crystallinity, chemical composition, surface morphology and topography of the nitrided layer are studied using X-ray diffraction (XRD), Fourier transform infra-red spectroscopy (FTIR), optical microscopy (OM), scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and atomic force microscopy (AFM) respectively. The XRD patterns reveal the development of different diffraction planes of Si3N4 confirming the formation of polycrystalline layer. FTIR spectrum confirms the formation of bond between Si and N. Results reveal that addition of Ar into N2 plasma plays an important role to enhance the production of active species which facilitate the nitrogen diffusion.

Metallic Coating for Carbon Fiber Reinforced Polymer Matrix Composite Substrate

This paper investigates the application of metallic coatings on high fiber volume fraction carbon/epoxy polymer matrix composites. For the grip of the metallic layer, a method of modifying the surface of the composite by introducing a mixture of copper and steel powder (filler powders) which can reduce the impact of thermal spray particles. The powder was introduced to the surface at the time of the forming. Arc spray was used to project the zinc coating layer. The substrate was grit blasted to avoid poor adherence. The porosity, microstructure, and morphology of layers are characterized by optical microscopy, SEM and image analysis. The samples were studied also in terms of hardness and erosion resistance. This investigation did not reveal any visible evidence damage to the substrates. The hardness of zinc layer was about 25.94 MPa and the porosity was around (∼6.70%). The erosion test showed that the zinc coating improves the resistance to erosion. Based on the results obtained, we can conclude that thermal spraying allows the production of protective coating on PMC. Zinc coating has been identified as a compatible material with the substrate. The filler powders layer protects the substrate from the impact of hot particles and allows avoiding the rupture of brittle carbon fibers.

Fabrication Characteristics and Mechanical Behavior of Fly Ash-Alumina Reinforced Zn-27Al Alloy Matrix Hybrid Composite Using Stir-Casting Technique

This paper reports the viability of developing Zn-27Al alloy matrix hybrid composites reinforced with alumina, graphite and fly ash (solid waste bye product of coal in thermal power plants). This research work was aimed at developing low cost-high performance Zn-27Al matrix composite with low density. Alumina particulates (Al2O3), graphite added with 0, 2, 3, 4 and 5 wt% fly ash were utilized to prepare 10wt% reinforcing phase with Zn-27Al alloy as matrix using two-step stir casting method. Density measurement, estimated percentage porosity, tensile testing, micro hardness measurement and optical microscopy were used to assess the performance of the composites produced. The results show that the hardness, ultimate tensile strength, and percent elongation of the hybrid composites decrease with increase in fly ash content. The maximum decrease in hardness and ultimate tensile strength of 13.72% and 15.25% respectively were observed for composite grade containing 5wt% fly ash. The percentage elongation of composite sample without fly ash is 8.9% which is comparable with that of the sample containing 2wt% fly ash with percentage elongation of 8.8%. The fracture toughness of the fly ash containing composites was however superior to those of composites without fly ash with 5wt% fly ash containing composite exhibiting the highest fracture toughness. The results show that fly ash can be utilized as complementary reinforcement in ZA-27 alloy matrix composite to reduce cost.

Effect of Cow bone and Groundnut Shell Reinforced in Epoxy Resin on the Mechanical Properties and Microstructure of the Composites

It is an established fact that polymers have several physical limitations such as low stiffness and low resistance to impact on loading. Hence, polymers do not usually have requisite mechanical strength for application in various fields. The reinforcement by high strength fibers provides the polymer substantially enhanced mechanical properties and makes them more suitable for a large number of diverse applications. This research evaluates the effects of particulate Cow bone and Groundnut shell additions on the mechanical properties and microstructure of cow bone and groundnut shell reinforced epoxy composite in order to assess the possibility of using it as a material for engineering applications. Cow bone and groundnut shell particles reinforced with epoxy (CBRPC and GSRPC) was prepared by varying the cow bone and groundnut shell particles from 0-25 wt% with 5 wt% intervals. A Hybrid of the Cow bone and Groundnut shell (HGSCB) reinforce with epoxy was also prepared. The mechanical properties of the developed composites were investigated. Optical microscopy was used to examine the microstructure of the composites. The results revealed that mechanical properties did not increase uniformly with additions in filler but exhibited maximum properties at specific percentages of filler additions. From the Microscopic evaluation, it was discovered that homogeneity decreases with increase in % filler, this could be due to poor interfacial bonding.

Analysis of Surface Hardness, Surface Roughness, and Near Surface Microstructure of AISI 4140 Steel Worked with Turn-Assisted Deep Cold Rolling Process

In the present study, response surface methodology has been used to optimize turn-assisted deep cold rolling process of AISI 4140 steel. A regression model is developed to predict surface hardness and surface roughness using response surface methodology and central composite design. In the development of predictive model, deep cold rolling force, ball diameter, initial roughness of the workpiece, and number of tool passes are considered as model variables. The rolling force and the ball diameter are the significant factors on the surface hardness and ball diameter and numbers of tool passes are found to be significant for surface roughness. The predicted surface hardness and surface roughness values and the subsequent verification experiments under the optimal operating conditions confirmed the validity of the predicted model. The absolute average error between the experimental and predicted values at the optimal combination of parameter settings for surface hardness and surface roughness is calculated as 0.16% and 1.58% respectively. Using the optimal processing parameters, the surface hardness is improved from 225 to 306 HV, which resulted in an increase in the near surface hardness by about 36% and the surface roughness is improved from 4.84µm to 0.252 µm, which resulted in decrease in the surface roughness by about 95%. The depth of compression is found to be more than 300µm from the microstructure analysis and this is in correlation with the results obtained from the microhardness measurements. Taylor hobson talysurf tester, micro vickers hardness tester, optical microscopy and X-ray diffractometer are used to characterize the modified surface layer. 

Deformation of Metallic Foams with Closed Cell at High Temperatures

The aim of this study is to investigate formability of Al based closed cell metallic foams at high temperature. The foam specimens with rectangular section were produced from AlMg1Si0.6TiH20.8 alloy preform material. Bending and free bending tests based on gravity effect were applied to foam specimens at high temperatures. During the tests, the time-angular deformation relationships with various temperatures were determined. Deformation types formed in cell walls were investigated by means of Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) and optical microscopy. Bending deformation about 90° was achieved without any defect at high temperatures. The importance of a critical temperature and deformation rate was emphasized in maintaining the deformation. Significant slip lines on surface of cell walls at tensile zones of bending specimen were observed. At high strain rates, the microcrack formation in boundaries of elongated grains was determined.

Gas-Solid Nitrocarburizing of Steels: Kinetic Modeling and Experimental Validation

The study is devoted to define the optimal conditions for the nitriding of pure iron at atmospheric pressure by using NH3- Ar-C3H8 gas mixtures. After studying the mechanisms of phase formation and mass transfer at the gas-solid interface, a mathematical model is developed in order to predict the nitrogen transfer rate in the solid, the ε-carbonitride layer growth rate and the nitrogen and carbon concentration profiles. In order to validate the model and to show its possibilities, it is compared with thermogravimetric experiments, analyses and metallurgical observations (X-ray diffraction, optical microscopy and electron microprobe analysis). Results obtained allow us to demonstrate the sound correlation between the experimental results and the theoretical predictions.

Effect of Friction Stir Welding on Microstructural and Mechanical Properties of Copper Alloy

This study demonstrates the feasibility of joining the commercial pure copper plates by friction stir welding (FSW). Microstructure, microhardness and tensile properties in terms of the joint efficiency were found 94.03 % compare to as receive base material (BM). The average hardness at the top was higher than bottom. Hardness of weld zone was higher than the base material. Different microstructure zones were revealed by optical microscopy and scanning electron microscopy. The stirred zone (SZ) exhibited primary two phases namely, recrystallized grains and fine precipitates in matrix of copper.

Application of HVOF Thermal Spraying inHigh Speed Gas Compressor Shafts

In this paper, the application of thermal spray coatings in high speed shafts by a revolution up to 23000 RPM has been studied. Gas compressor shafts are worn in contact zone with journal therefore will be undersized. Wear mechanisms of compressor shaft were identified. The predominant wear mechanism is abrasion wear. The worn surface was coated by hard WC-Co cermets using high velocity oxy fuel (HVOF) after preparation. The shafts were in satisfactory service in 8000h period. The metallurgical and Tribological studies has been made on the worn and coated shaft using optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and X-ray diffraction.

Synthesis and Characterization of Silver/Polylactide Nanocomposites

Silver/polylactide nanocomposites (Ag/PLA-NCs) were synthesized via chemical reduction method in diphase solvent. Silver nitrate and sodium borohydride were used as a silver precursor and reducing agent in the polylactide (PLA). The properties of Ag/PLA-NCs were studied as a function of the weight percentages of silver nanoparticles (8, 16 and 32 wt% of Ag-NPs) relative to the weight of PLA. The Ag/PLA-NCs were characterized by Xray diffraction (XRD), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), electro-optical microscopy (EOM), UV-visible spectroscopy (UV-vis) and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR). XRD patterns confirmed that Ag-NPs crystallographic planes were face centered cubic (fcc) type. TEM images showed that mean diameters of Ag-NPs were 3.30, 3.80 and 4.80 nm. Electro-optical microscopy revealed excellent dispersion and interaction between Ag-NPs and PLA films. The generation of silver nanoparticles was confirmed from the UVvisible spectra. FT-IR spectra showed that there were no significant differences between PLA and Ag/PLA-NCs films. The synthesized Ag/PLA-NCs were stable in organic solution over a long period of time without sign of precipitation.

Residual Stresses in Thermally Sprayed Gas Turbine Components

In this paper, the residual stress of thermal spray coatings in gas turbine component by curvature method has been studied. The samples and shaft were coated by hard WC-12Co cermets using high velocity oxy fuel (HVOF) after preparation in same conditions. The curvature of coated samples was measured by using of coordinate measurement machine (CMM). The metallurgical and Tribological studies has been made on the coated shaft using optical microscopy and scanning electron microscopy (SEM)

Effect of Spray Stand-off on Elasticity Modulus of Thermally Sprayed Coatings

The mechanical and tribological properties in WC-Co coatings are strongly affected by hardness and elasticity specifications. The results revealed the effect of spraying distance on microhardness and elasticity modulus of coatings. The metallurgical studies have been made on coated samples using optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy (SEM).

High Temperature Deformation Behavior of Cr-containing Superplastic Iron Aluminide

Superplastic deformation and high temperature load relaxation behavior of coarse-grained iron aluminides with the composition of Fe-28 at.% Al have been investigated. A series of load relaxation and tensile tests were conducted at temperatures ranging from 600 to 850oC. The flow curves obtained from load relaxation tests were found to have a sigmoidal shape and to exhibit stress vs. strain rate data in a very wide strain rate range from 10-7/s to 10-2/s. Tensile tests have been conducted at various initial strain rates ranging from 3×10-5/s to 1×10-2/s. Maximum elongation of ~500 % was obtained at the initial strain rate of 3×10-5/s and the maximum strain rate sensitivity was found to be 0.68 at 850oC in binary Fe-28Al alloy. Microstructure observation through the optical microscopy (OM) and the electron back-scattered diffraction (EBSD) technique has been carried out on the deformed specimens and it has revealed the evidences for grain boundary migration and grain refinement to occur during superplastic deformation, suggesting the dynamic recrystallization mechanism. The addition of Cr by the amount of 5 at.% appeared to deteriorate the superplasticity of the binary iron aluminide. By applying the internal variable theory of structural superplasticity, the addition of Cr has been revealed to lower the contribution of the frictional resistance to dislocation glide during high temperature deformation of the Fe3Al alloy.