Paper number 706


J. Narciso1, R. Arpón1, V. Ferrández1, C. García-Cordovilla2, and E. Louis3

1Departamento de Química Inorgánica, Universidad de Alicante
Apartado 99, E-03080 Alicante, Spain.
2Industria Española del Aluminio, Centro de Investigación y Desarrollo
Apartado 25, E-03080 Alicante, Spain.
3Departamento de Física Aplicada, Universidad de Alicante
Apartado 99, E-03080 Alicante, Spain.

Summary TiC particulate/aluminium composites have been obtained by means of pressure infiltration of the liquid metal into packed samples of the ceramic particles. The reactions between the metal and the particle have been investigated by heat treating the so produced composite at different temperatures. The main reaction products result to be alumina and aluminium carbide. An analysis of the possible reaction occurring during the heat treatments indicate that alumina can only be formed if the TiC particulate are oxidised prior to the infiltration process. It is shown that reactions between Al and various titanium oxides can in fact produce alumina. The likelihood of the various reactions is analysed by means of a calculation of their associated free energies. Instead aluminium carbide can be formed by direct reaction between aluminium and titanium carbide, producing either free titanium (that can eventually be dissolved into aluminium) or titanium aluminides. Thermodynamic calculations indicate that none of the possible reactions is favourable. Thus, further work is needed to reconcile our experimental results with the thermodynamic data.
Keywords metal matrix composites, infiltration, aluminium alloys, ceramic particulate.

Theme : Metal Matrix Composites ; Interface and Interphase

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