Reactive Hot Pressing of Al₂O₃-Ni Composites


Reactive hot pressing has been used to form Al2O3-Ni composites from Al and NiO. The effect of attrition milling on the precursor powder and subsequent composite formation was examined. The surface area, phase assemblage, reaction temperature, and morphology of precursor powders were characterized as a function of milling time, which ranged from 0 (unmilled) to 480 min (8 hrs). During milling, particle surface area increased from less than 1 to more than 11 m2/g as the size of the Al and NiO particles decreased. At the same time, the temperature at which Al and NiO reacted to form Al2O3 and Ni decreased from more than 1000°C to around 600°C. Formation of Al2O3 or Ni during milling was not detected, regardless of time. Precursor milling time also affected the morphology and phase assemblage of composites produced by reactive hot pressing. Composites formed from unmilled powders contained a small amount of unreacted NiO and had a Ni ligament size greater than 10 mgrm. The composite forming reaction went to completion when powders milled for one hour or more were hot pressed. Based on microstructural evidence and analogy to similar reactions, it appears that the composite forming reaction proceeds by Al diffusing into and reacting with NiO.


Materials Science and Engineering


Caterpillar Inc.
National Science Foundation (U.S.)

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Article - Journal

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© 2003 Springer Verlag, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jul 2003