Sintering enhancement in dynamically compacted commercial iron powders

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  • Killen P
  • St. John D
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Abstract

Powder metallurgy compacts of near theoretical density have been made from commercial sponge iron and atomized iron powders, the latter with and without admixed lubricant. Equivalent compacts were made by conventional quasi-static die pressing and by the dynamic powder compaction method to allow for comparative testing of mechanical properties. The compacts were sintered over a range of temperatures from 700 to 1120??C. Test specimens were cut from the compacts and tested to produce data on tensile strength, ductility (area reduction) and cantilever beam (Izod) impact strength. Compacts made dynamically from both the sponge iron and atomized iron powders exhibited higher tensile strengths and ductilities than those made quasi-statically and sintered to the same temperature. However, there were marked differences in the impact strength. With the sponge iron powder, dynamic compacts had lower impact strength than equivalent quasi-static compacts, but the reverse result was obtained with the atomized powder. The atomized powder was of much higher purity than the sponge iron and the microstructural evidence indicated that the inferior impact strength of the dynamically compacted sponge iron was due to interaction between the shock waves used for compaction and the numerous brittle inclusions present in this material. The results with the lubricated powder showed no sintering enhancement attributable to dynamic powder compaction. This suggests that the mechanism for the sintering enhancement that can be achieved with this consolidation technique is related to the friction processes at the particle boundaries, possibly coupled with the elevated temperatures present at these boundaries during dynamic compaction. ?? 1990.

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