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Solidification and re-melting phenomena during the slurry preparation stage using the RheoMetalTM process
Jönköping University, School of Engineering, JTH, Materials and Manufacturing. Jönköping University, School of Engineering, JTH. Research area Materials and manufacturing – Casting.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6755-2123
Department of Materials Engineering Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Mashhad, Iran.
Jönköping University, School of Engineering, JTH, Materials and Manufacturing. Jönköping University, School of Engineering, JTH. Research area Materials and manufacturing – Casting.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-0101-0062
Jönköping University, School of Engineering, JTH, Materials and Manufacturing. Jönköping University, School of Engineering, JTH. Research area Materials and manufacturing – Casting.
2016 (English)Report (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The melting sequence of the Enthalpy Exchange Material (EEM) and formation of slurry in the RheoMetalTM process was investigated. The EEM was extracted, together with a portion of the slurry at different times before complete melting, and quenched. The EEM initially increased in size due to melt freezing onto its surface, forming a freeze-on layer. The initial growth of this layer was followed by a constant diameter of the EEM and thereafter subsequent melting. Microstructural characterization of the size and morphology of different phases in the EEM and the freeze-on layer was made. Dendritic equiaxed grains and eutectic regions containing Si particles and Cu-bearing particles were observed in the as-cast EEM. The freeze-on layer consisted of dendritic aluminum slightly tilted by about 30° toward the upstream direction, caused by the rotation of the EEM. Energy Dispersion Spectroscopy analysis showed that the freeze-on layer had a composition corresponding to a higher melting point than the EEM.

Microstructural investigation of the EEM showed that the temperature rapidly increased to 495 ºC, causing incipient melting of Al2Cu and Al5Mg8Si6Cu2 phases in grain boundary regions. Following the incipient melting, the temperature in the EEM increased further and binary Al-Si eutectic started to melt to form a region of a fully developed coherent mushy state. Experimental results and a thermal model indicated that as the dendrites spheroidized and the interface at the EEM/freeze-on layer reached a mushy state with 25% solid fraction, coherency was lost and disintegration of the freeze-on layer took place. Subsequently, in the absence of the shielding effect from the freeze-on Layer, the EEM disintegrates at a higher solid fraction, estimated to be 50%. The fast and complex slurry generation in the RheoMetalTM process is a hybrid process with both rheocasting and thixocasting elements in the process.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Jönköping: Jönköping University, School of Engineering , 2016. , 21 p.
Series
JTH research report, ISSN 1404-0018 ; 5
Keyword [en]
Rheocasting, RheoMetal(TM) process, Slurry fabrication, Solidification, Melting, Heat Transfer Model
National Category
Metallurgy and Metallic Materials
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-31430OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hj-31430DiVA: diva2:954452
Available from: 2016-08-22 Created: 2016-08-22 Last updated: 2016-08-22Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Rheocasting of aluminium alloys: Process and components characteristics
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Rheocasting of aluminium alloys: Process and components characteristics
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Semi-Solid Metal (SSM) casting is a promising technology offering an opportunity to manufacture net-shape, complex geometry metal components in a single operation. However, the absence of foundry guidelines and limited design data for SSM casting makes it challenging to predict the performance of both process and components. The objective of this research was to develop and offer new solutions to material processing-related issues in the electronics industry. By investigating the opportunities afforded by the recently developed RheoMetalTM rheocasting process, a better understanding of the critical factors needed for an effective manufacturing process and optimised component characteristics was achieved.

A study of the evolution of microstructure at different stages of the RheoMetalTM process demonstrated the influence of multistage solidification on the microstructural characteristics of the rheocast components. The microstructure of a slurry consists of the solute-lean and coarse globular α-Al particles with a uniform distribution of alloying elements, suspended in the liquid matrix. Additional solute-rich α-Al particles were identified as being a consequence of discrete nucleation events taking place after the initial slurry production. In the final components, macrosegregation was observed in the form of variations in the ratio of solute-lean coarse globular α-Al particles and solute-rich fine α-Al particles in both longitudinal and transverse directions.

The relation between microstructural characteristics and material properties was established by determination of the local properties of a rheocast component. The fracture of a rheocast telecom component was strongly affected by microstructural inhomogeneity. In particular, macrosegregation in the form of liquid surface segregation bands and sub-surface pore bands strongly affected the fracture behaviour. Thermal conductivity measurements revealed that regions of the component with a high amount of solute-lean globular α-Al particles showed higher thermal conductivity. The effect of the local variation in thermal conductivity on the thermal performance of a large rheocast heatsink was evaluated by simulation. The results clearly show the importance of considering material inhomogeneity when creating a robust component design.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Jönköping: Jönköping University, School of Engineering, 2016. 45 p.
Keyword
Rheocasting, aluminium alloy, RheoMetal(TM) process, microstructural characteristics, component properties and performance, robust design process
National Category
Metallurgy and Metallic Materials
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-31428 (URN)978-91-87289-16-3 (ISBN)
Public defence
2016-09-23, E1405, School of Engineering, Jönköping, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Knowledge Foundation
Available from: 2016-08-22 Created: 2016-08-22 Last updated: 2016-08-22Bibliographically approved

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