Research Papers: Friction and Wear

Effects of Microstructure of Quasicrystal Alloys on Their Mechanical and Tribological Performance

[+] Author and Article Information
Kyungjun Lee

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Texas A&M University,
College Station, TX 77843-3123
e-mail: lee23834@tamu.edu

Wei Dai

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Texas A&M University,
College Station, TX 77843
e-mail: daiwei7@tamu.edu

Donald Naugle

Department of Physics & Astronomy,
Texas A&M University,
College Station, TX 77843
e-mail: naugle@physics.tamu.edu

Hong Liang

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Texas A&M University,
College Station, TX 77843
e-mail: hliang@tamu.edu

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Tribology Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF TRIBOLOGY. Manuscript received May 28, 2017; final manuscript received February 23, 2018; published online April 10, 2018. Assoc. Editor: Min Zou.

J. Tribol 140(5), 051605 (Apr 10, 2018) (8 pages) Paper No: TRIB-17-1201; doi: 10.1115/1.4039528 History: Received May 28, 2017; Revised February 23, 2018

The current design of materials against wear considers hardness as the sole material property. As a result, the brittleness associated with increased hardness leads to severe damage. The purpose of this research is to understand the nature of conflicts between hardness and toughness of a new alloy composite. First, we designed Al-Cu-Fe alloys containing crystal structures of λ, β, and quasi-crystalline i-phase. These and their combination with others lead to a set of alloys with various hardness and fracture toughness. Experimental study was carried out using a noble and hard tungsten carbide (WC) ball against sample disks. The WC ball did not produce any wear. The wear rate of those alloys was found to be dependent not only on their hardness, but also the toughness, an alternative to the well-accepted Archard-based equations.

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Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Fabrication of samples: (a) ternary Al-Cu-Fe alloy phase diagram at 600 °C and (b) a processing sequence for a formation of six different Al-Cu-Fe system samples

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Fig. 2

Schematic of experimental wear test with 6 mm tungsten carbide ball under an unlubricated and reciprocating linear mode at room temperature

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Fig. 3

Characterization of samples (I–V): (a) SEM micrographs showing phase distribution of each sample (I–V) and (b) comparison chart of XRD patterns of five samples. (c) SEM micrographs for porosity analysis of each sample (I–VI).

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Fig. 4

Mechanical properties and tribological performance of samples (I–V). (a) Hardness and fracture toughness results of five samples, (b) indentations of samples containing majority λ, β, and i-phase after indentation test at the same load (1000 g), (c) microstructure and measured profiles of worn surfaces for five samples (I–V), (d) wear volume losses of each samples after testing. Sample I contains the lambda-phase, sample II has the beta-phase, sample III includes the i-phase, sample IV is the (lambda + beta)-phase, and sample V is the (beta + i)-phase. And SEM images of a tungsten carbide ball with wear scar (after testing of sample I), and (e) variation of friction coefficient according to sliding distance in five samples (I–V).

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Fig. 5

Relationships between mechanical properties and tribological performance: (a) Vickers microhardness and fracture toughness plotted as a function of wear rate in five samples (I–V). (b) Wear rate according to volume fraction of single lambda-phase and (c) wear rate according to volume fraction of single i-phase.

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Fig. 6

A plot of the fracture toughness versus the Vickers hardness for six samples



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