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Hot tearing and constitutive behaviour of semi-solid aluminum alloys

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Title: Hot tearing and constitutive behaviour of semi-solid aluminum alloys
Author: Phillion, Andre
Degree Doctor of Philosophy - PhD
Program Materials Engineering
Copyright Date: 2007
Publicly Available in cIRcle 2007-12-03
Subject Keywords Hot tearing; Semi-solid constitutive behaviour; Finite element modelling; X-ray micro-tomography; aluminum alloys
Abstract: The occurrence of hot tearing during solidification is one of the major factors influencing both the quality and productivity of aluminum castings. In order to reduce the formation of hot tears, quantitative information regarding both hot tearing formation and semi-solid deformation is essential. In this study, the mechanisms of hot tearing and semi-solid deformation have been investigated via two novel techniques: x-ray micro-tomography on material deformed in the semi-solid region, and development of a three phase microstructural model based on a geometry derived from a Voronoi diagram with rounded corners and porosity. Numerical techniques were utilized to quantify both the size evolution and orientation of internal damage relative to void growth. In order to conduct the above research, a new semi-solid tensile deformation methodology was devised which uses a two thermocouple control technique to enable accurate measurement of semi-solid tensile strength and ductility. The experimental work was conducted on the aluminum – magnesium alloy AA5182 in the as-cast and hot isostatic pressing (HIP) states. The x-ray micro-tomography technique was used to observe that semi-solid deformation is accommodated by internal damage via growth of as-cast porosity and the nucleation of new damage-based voids. As the volume fraction of damage increases, the growth of voids occurs in an orientation perpendicular to the loading direction, both through expansion within the grain boundary liquid and via coalescence between voids. The damage then localizes, causing failure. The finite element semi-solid microstructural model was used to explore the effects of fraction solid, fraction porosity, and grain size on semi-solid constitutive behaviour. The simulations revealed that increased grain size and fraction porosity lead to a reduction in flow stress for a given fraction solid. Furthermore, local strain accumulation was linked to hot tearing, since strain localizes in the liquid very early in the deformation process. Based on the model predictions, a new constitutive relationship was developed over the range 0.75 < fs < 0.95. Together, these two techniques have provided powerful new insight, such as the critical role played by as-cast porosity, on the phenomena of hot tearing and semi-solid deformation in aluminum alloys.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2429/207

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