The fabrication of aluminium: carbon nanotube metal matrix composites

Powell, Adam R (2014). The fabrication of aluminium: carbon nanotube metal matrix composites. University of Birmingham. M.Phil.


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A range of multi-walled carbon nanotubes of various purities were used to produce aluminium-carbon nanotube metal matrix composite specimens. Composite preform powders were prepared by multi-axial mixing, known as turbula mixing, for 8 hours and high energy ball milling for I hour and for 4 hours. Composite specimens were then prepared using numerous techniques: cold compaction, sintering and casting. Equal Channel Angular Pressing (ECAP) was also used to fabricate composite specimens. Specimens from all methods were tested for density and hardness. They were also examined using scanning electron microscopy. It was found that high grade carbon nanotubes produced the best density and hardness properties, and that high energy ball milling was superior to turbula mixing for preparation of composite preforms. Ball milling for 4 hours produced the most consistent composite properties. Equal Channel Angular Pressing (ECAP) was found to produce a consistent improvement in both hardness and density of composite samples compared to cold compaction. Results from sintered specimens showed further improvement and these specimens showed the highest hardness and most densification of all samples investigated in this report. An attempt was made to produce cast composite specimens. Composite castings did not achieve comparable properties to other processing techniques.

Type of Work: Thesis (Masters by Research > M.Phil.)
Award Type: Masters by Research > M.Phil.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Engineering & Physical Sciences
School or Department: School of Metallurgy and Materials
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: T Technology > TN Mining engineering. Metallurgy


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