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Microstructural, electrical, thermal and tribological studies of copper-fly ash composites through powder metallurgy

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This research work address the fabrication of copper (Cu) matrix composites, reinforced with fly ash (FA) particulates with 3, 6, 9 and 12 wt.% using the powder metallurgy route. The microstructural, physical, electrical, thermal, mechanical and tribological properties of thus fabricated Cu-FA composites have been studied. Optical microstructural characterization of the composites exposed persuasively uniform distribution of FA reinforcement with minimum porosity. The mixed powder SEM images revealed the homogeneous dispersion of fly ash particulates in the copper matrix. The hardness values showed improvement with increase in the weight percentage of FA in the Cu matrix. Electrical conductivity was measured using the four-point probe method at room temperature. Thermal conductivity was measured with a thermal diffusivity analyzer at room temperature. The fly ash addition leads to weakening the conductivity of Cu-FA composites. The tribological properties of Cu-FA composite specimens were investigated using a Pin-on-disc tribo testing machine against an EN81 steel contour disc. The specific wear rate of the composites tended first to decrease, which was attributed mainly to the formation of a mechanically mixed layer on the worn surface. Then it would increase as the FA content increased because of reduction in ductility and brittle oxide cracks associated with adding more FA particulates. It seems that composites with FA percentages below 9wt.% have optimum properties of microstructure, hardness and wear resistance, which is suitable for applications such as electrical sliding contacts, electrical discharge machining and spot welding electrodes.
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Bibliogr. 30 poz., rys., wykr., tab.
  • Department of Mechanical Engineering, Kamaraj College of Engineering and Technology, Madurai-625701, Tamilnadu, India
  • Department of Mechanical Engineering, K.L.N College of Engineering, Madurai-630612, Tamilnadu, India,
  • Department of Mechanical Engineering, Kamaraj College of Engineering and Technology, Madurai-625701, Tamilnadu, India
  • Department of Mechanical Engineering, Chandigarh College of Engineering and Technology, Chandigarh-160019, India
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Opracowanie rekordu w ramach umowy 509/P-DUN/2018 ze środków MNiSW przeznaczonych na działalność upowszechniającą naukę (2019).
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