The effects of long term oxidation on the microstructural modification and on the electrical resistivity and mechanical strength of an AlN-SiC-MoSi2electroconductive ceramic composite are presented. The microstructure of the pressureless sintered composite is described and the oxidation behaviour is discussed. The formation of protective mullite layer at temperatures above 1000 °C provides good oxidation resistance for use at higher temperatures. At temperatures below 1000 °C, the AlN/SiC matrix disables the "pesting" phenomena and strength degradation, despite the fact that at these temperatures MoSi2oxidizes rapidly. The surface modification induced by oxidation on AlN-SiC-MoSi2composites does not affect the mechanical strength, while the electrical conductivity strongly decreases. © 2003 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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