Rapid discharge sintering of nickel-diamond metal matrix composites

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Title: Rapid discharge sintering of nickel-diamond metal matrix composites
Authors: Twomey, Barry
Breen, Aidan
Byrne, Greg
Hynes, Alan
Dowling, Denis P.
Permanent link: http://hdl.handle.net/10197/5260
Date: Jul-2011
Abstract: In this study rapid discharge sintering (RDS) and furnace sintering of nickel–diamond metal matrix composites (MMCs) is compared. Nickel–diamond powder composites (80–20% by weight respectively) were uniaxially pressed into 20 mm discs at compaction pressures of 100, 200 and 300 MPa. Discharge sintering was carried out using a microwave plasma formed with hydrogen and hydrogen/nitrogen as the discharge gases and tube furnace sintering carried out in a argon or a hydrogen/nitrogen (3:1) atmosphere. Discs pressed to 300 MPa were treated at both 850 and 1000 °C. The properties of the sintered nickel–diamond composites were characterized using density, approximate flexural strength, hardness, wear resistance, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and X-ray diffraction (XRD). The RDS samples sintered at 1000 °C achieved the maximum approximate disc flexural strength of 473 MPa within a 20 min treatment time compared with 6 h for furnace sintered samples. Samples sintered using the RDS technique exhibited increased hardness values and a finer nickel matrix over furnace sintered samples. Using the RDS technique it has been possible to process nickel–diamond MMCs without oxidation or graphitisation at temperatures above 900 °C. Minimal diamond destruction was observed during abrasive wear testing of the RDS samples compared with damage and pull-out observed for furnace sintering.
Type of material: Journal Article
Publisher: Elsevier
Copyright (published version): 2011 Elsevier
Keywords: Metal matrix composites (MMCs);Sintering;Mechanical behaviour;Wear;Diamond processing
DOI: 10.1016/j.jmatprotec.2011.02.002
Language: en
Status of Item: Peer reviewed
Appears in Collections:Mechanical & Materials Engineering Research Collection

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