Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Brajendra Mishra, Advisor

Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Carl Soderhjelm, Committee Member

Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

David Weiss, Committee Member

Identifier

etd-011419-123457

Abstract

Increasing the mechanical properties of cast aluminum components at temperatures in the vicinity of 300°C will allow for lightweighting opportunities, especially in automotive and aerospace applications. Metal-matrix nanocomposites show great promise in this regard, in the form of aluminum as a matrix containing well-dispersed ceramic nanoparticles. These have been shown to retain most of the ductility of the matrix alloy, while adding strength and stiffness at far lower reinforcement fractions than are required in microcomposites. Unfortunately, metal-matrix nanocomposites are plagued by issues which limit commercialization, such as high costs of production, issues with particle wetting and dispersion, low potential for scalability and poor castability. In this work, two existing metal-matrix nanocomposite manufacturing processes showing promise to overcome some of these obstacles were developed further: the in-situ gasliquid reaction, and self-propagating high-temperature synthesis. Composites reinforced with aluminum nitride and titanium carbide were produced, alloyed with several matrix compositions and squeeze cast. Insights into the effects of process design on microstructure and properties were gained, and potential process improvements and areas to focus future research were identified.

Publisher

Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Degree Name

MS

Department

Materials Science & Engineering

Project Type

Thesis

Date Accepted

2018-12-19

Accessibility

Unrestricted

Subjects

aluminum matrix, aluminum-matrix, composite, nano-composite, nanocomposite

Share

COinS