INFLUENCE OF WHISKER REINFORCEMENT ON THE ABRASIVE WEAR BEHAVIOR OF SILICON NITRIDE-
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16-02-2011, 12:09 PM



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INFLUENCE OF WHISKER REINFORCEMENT ON THE ABRASIVE WEAR BEHAVIOR OF
SILICON NITRIDE- AND ALUMINA-BASED COMPOSITES

Abstract
 The abrasive wear of brittle materials is generally modeled as an inverse function of both the bulk hardness and fracture toughness.
 According to these models,an increase in the hardness or fracture toughness of a material will enhance its wear resistance.
 However,less is known about how whisker-reinforcement influences the properties that are dependent upon the short-crack toughness, such as abrasive wear.
 Alumina-based ceramics improve the wear.
 the addition of SiC reinforcement to silicon nitride ceramics does not result in improved wear resistance.
Introduction

 Because of the complexity of wear processes, a detailed understanding of how ceramic materials react in tribological environments continues to elude both materials and design engineers.
 However, in almost every case, large-scale toughening requires that these mechanisms be activated over some distance behind the tip of a propagating crack.
 Thus, while the long-crack toughness of the bulk material may be enhanced by the presence of the whisker reinforcement, he short-crack toughness of the bulk material may remain unchanged, or even be degraded,by the presence of these whiskers.
Microstructural characteristics of the ceramics and ceramic composites
Abrasive wear behavior
Conclusion
 A detailed study of the influence of randomly oriented Sic whisker reinforcement on the abrasive wear behavior of silicon nitride- and alumina-based ceramics suggests that it is the residual stress state of the whisker-matrix interface that determines the wear resistance of the composite material.
 The addition of SiC whiskers to a Si3N4 matrix sets up tensile stresses at the whisker-matrix interfaces, enhancing the bulk toughness of the composite.
 The addition of Sic whiskers to an alumina matrix, on the other hand, results in the creation of compressive stresses at the whisker-matrix interface, producing a relatively stronger bond that can better withstand the rigors of an abrasive wear environment.
 This result, the Al203 + SiCw composite is consistently a more wear resistant material than are the Si3N4+ SiCw composites
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