Field-Enhanced Sintering of Advanced Ceramic Materials

Reference Presenter Authors
12-014 Raymond Brennan Brennan, R.(US Army Research Laboratory); Blair, V.L.(US Army Research Laboratory); Kornecki, M.(; Raju, S.V.(ORAU); Kellogg, F.(SURVICE Engineering); Fry, A.(ORAU);

The next generation of processing is focused on the interaction between materials and external fields to produce outcomes that are unattainable through conventional means, expanding materials-by-design and processing science capabilities beyond the current state-of-the-art.  Research has been conducted to utilize these innovative technologies and material solutions for exploring the influence of applied fields over structure-property relationships in advanced ceramic materials.  The application of magnetic, electric, microwave, and other types of external fields during processing often has a profound influence, altering the free energy of the system and affecting phase formation as well as densification behavior of materials, in many cases lowering temperatures and shortening times required to produce bulk components.  The ability to rapidly densify materials under less extreme processing conditions can allow for preservation of nanostructure, providing the opportunity to improve mechanical properties that are vital to Army protection applications, including strength, hardness, and fracture toughness.  By understanding these interactions, microstructures and phases can be tailored to fabricate ceramics with the desired characteristics.  In order to gain further control over these field-enhanced ceramic materials, dopants, additives, and second phases can be strategically added to amplify the response to applied fields, which is crucial for materials that do not typically demonstrate significant responses (i.e. diamagnetic ceramics exposed to magnetic fields).  Strategies in experimental design, computational modeling, and in-situ characterization have been employed to develop unique field-enhanced processes, and these revelations have led to increased interest in the influence of fields over ceramic material phases and properties.

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