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International Journal of Civil, Mechanical and Energy Science (IJCMES

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[Vol-2, Issue-1, Jan-Feb, 2016]
ISSN : 2455-5304

Effect of Chilling on Soundness, Micro Hardness
and Ultimate Tensile Strength of Nickel AlloyFused Silica Metal Matrix Composite
G. Purushotham1, Joel Hemanth2
1

Department of Aeronautical Engineering, Mangalore Institute of Technology & Engineering, Moodbidri, Karnataka, INDIA
2
Department of Mechanical Engineering, HMS Institute of Technology, Tumkur, Karnataka, INDIA

Abstract—An investigation has been carried out to
fabricate and evaluate the strength and soundness of chilled
composites consisting of nickel matrix and fused silica
particles (size 40–150 μm) in the matrix. The dispersoid
added ranged from 3 to 12 wt. % in steps of 3%. The
resulting composites cast in moulds containing metallic and
non metallic chill blocks (MS, SiC& Cu) were tested for
their microstructure, hardness and tensile strength
properties. The main objective of the present research is to
obtain fine grain Ni/SiO2 chilled sound composite having
very good properties. Results of the investigation reveal the
following: (1) Strength of the composite developed is highly
dependent on the location of the casting from where the test
specimens are taken and also on the dispersoid content of
the composite. (2) Chill thickness and chill material,
however, does significantly affect the strength and
soundness of the composite. (3) Soundness of the composite
developed is highly dependent on the chilling rate as well as
the dispersoid content.
Keywords—Chills, Fused silica, Metal matrix composite,
Hardness and Tensile strength,Nickel alloy.
I.
INTRODUCTION
Nickel alloy based metal matrix composites are the class of
advanced materials that are well suited for pumps, valves
and automotive industries because of their strength,
corrosion resistance and for electric and electronic industry
because of their high thermal and electrical
conductivities[1-2]. The demand for such functional
material to provide high performance has resulted in
continuous attempts being made particularly in areas of
alloy design and the use of novel processing techniques to
develop composites or hybrid materials as serious
competitors to the traditional engineering alloys. In
particular, the particle-reinforced metal matrix composites
(MMCs) are attractive in that they exhibit near-isotropic
properties by comparison with the continuously-reinforced
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matrices [3-6]. Others reported the advantages of this alloy
have to offer over the other material include a potential for
high hardness and abrasion resistance, improved fracture
crack propagation and good micro creep performance.
Furthermore, fabrication of the discontinuously-reinforced
nickel composites can be achieved by standard
metallurgical processing methods and these materials can be
machined by using conventional facilities. The combination
of properties offered by particle-reinforced nickel metalmatrix composites makes these materials attractive for
applications in the aerospace, defense and plumbing
industries [7-10]. In the past years, only studies have been
conducted to understand and document the metallurgical
and mechanical properties of nickel and nickel alloys.
It is well known that Ni alloys that freeze over a wide range
of temperature are difficult to feed during solidification.
The dispersed porosity caused by the pasty mode of
solidification can be effectively reduced by the use of chills.
Chills extract heat at a faster rate and promote directional
solidification. Therefore, chills are widely used by foundry
engineers for the production of sound and quality castings
[11-14].With the increase in the demand for quality
composites, it has become essential to produce nickel alloy
composites that are free from solidification defects. Nickel
alloy castings widely used in automobiles and industries are
prone to unsoundness in the form of micro-shrinkage.
II.
EXPERIMENT DETAILS
2.1 MATERIAL SELECTION:
The metal matrix material was selected available pure
nickel base alloy (Monel metal). The chemical composition
of the matrix is given in the table 1. The reinforcement was
pure SiO2 of particles size 40μm to 150μm. Induction
method was used for preparation of the composite.

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Table 1:Composition of Nickel alloy. (M
(M-35-1)
Element

Ni

Cu

Fe

C

Mn

Si

P

Composi
tion in
wt%

Bala
nce

26.6

0.51
3

0.196

3.02

0.8

0.023
2

Element

S

Cr

Co

Al

Ti

Sn

Pb

Composi
tion in
wt%

0.00
27

0.02
52

0.08
26

0.112

0.121

0.023
7

0.075
3

III.
PREPARATION OF THE COMPOSITE
The nickel base alloy / fused SiO2 metal matrix composite
were fabricated by using induction furnace attached with a
stirrer by varying percentage of reinforcement particles
from 3 wt% to 12 wt% in steps of 3%. This method is the
most economical to fabricate composites materials. The
matrixx was first superheated above its melting temperature
(1560 0C) and preheated SiO2 (500 0C) particulates added
into molten metal. The molten metal was stirred properly.
The melt at 1560°C was poured into the sand moulds where
chills are introduced. The moulds
lds for the plate type of
castings 225*50*25 mm were prepared
preparedusing silica sand
with 5% bentonite as binder and 5% moisture and finally
they were dried in an air furnace at a temperature of 1560
0
C, which was cooled from one end by different metallic
and non
n metallic chill block set in the mould and induction
furnace are as shown in fig 1 and 2 respectively.

1

Fig 2. Induction furnace
IV.

TESTING OF COMPOSITES

4.1 TENSILE STRENGTH TEST:

2

Fig 3.UTM-40T
40T and specimen for tensile test as per ASTM

3

4

Fig 1. Chills arrangement
1) SiCchill 2) Cu chill 3) MS chill 4) Without chill

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Specimens for tensile testing were selected to understand
the effect of ultimate tensile strength on the matrix
composites. The specimen dimensions were as per ASTM
E8-M04 round
ound standards as shown in Fig.3.The
Fig.3
specimens
were machined using CNC lathe machines. Tension tests
were performed to determine the ultimate tensile strength
(UTS) using Computerized UTM shown in Fig.3.
Fig.3

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4.2 MICRO STRUCTURAL STUDIES:
Vickers micro hardness tests were performed on all samples
of the metal matrix composites developed. Polished
specimens used for microstructure analysis, were used for
hardness studies using micro
micr hardness tester shown in Fig.5.
A load of 100g for period of 10 seconds was applied on the
specimens. The hardness was determined by recording the
diagonal length of indentation produced. The tests were
carried out at three different locations in order to prevent
the possible effect of indenter resting on the harder
particles. Each test result was obtained from an average of
at least three samples of the same location from the chill
end.
V.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
D
5.1 MICROSTRUCTURAL ANALYSIS:
Fig 4.. Metallurgical Microscope
Specimens were selected at the chill end are observed under
the microscope. Microstructural studies were carried out
using
NIKON–Japan,
Japan,
ECLIPSE
LV150
optical
metallurgical microscope. The specimens for microscopic
examination are cut from desired location, ground, polished
and etched as per ASTM standards. The burs and edge
protrusions are removed by polishing on a grit abrasive
coated belt grinder. The specimens were ground on 400,
600 and 1000 grit SiC emery paper. Subsequently, the
ground samples were mechanically polished using one
micron diamond based polishing compound. The polished
specimens were washed with distilled water are etched
using dilutedd keller’s reagent (90ml Hcl+5ml HNo3+ 5ml
H2So4+1ml HF).
4.3 MICRO HARDNESS TEST:

Base Metal 500 x

3% SiO2 plain

Fig 5. Micro Vickers Hardness Tester
Test
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6 % SiO2 plain
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9% SiO2 plain

3% SiO2 MS Chill

3% SiO2 SiC chill

6% SiO2 MS Chill

6% SiO2 SiC chill

9% SiO2 MS Chill

9% SiO2. SiC chill

6% SiO2 Cu Chill
Fig 6. Microstructural studies of base metal, different
weight % of SiO2 and different chills.

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6% SiO2:
Discussion:
It is observed from the microstructural studies that (fig
6),dispersoid is distributed uniformly and this is mainly
because of stirring and density difference. Bonding is
perfect between matrix and dispersoid due to preheating of
the dispersoid and no mismatch between them is observed.
Micro porosity is also not observed in the microstructure.
The microstructure reveals fine grain structure because of
chilling.
5.2 CHEMICAL COMPOSITION BY EDX TEST:
BASE METAL:
Elem Weig
ent
ht%

3% SiO2:

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Si K
PK
SK
Mn
K
Fe K
Ni K
Cu K
Nb L

0.83
0.73
0.29
2.03
2.04
62.17
30.79
1.13

Total
s

100.0
0

Elem
ent

Weig
ht%

Si K
PK
SK
Mn
K
Fe K
Ni K
Cu K
Nb L

2.39
0.20
0.18
2.20
1.78
67.60
25.66
-0.01

Total
s

100.0
0

9% SiO2:

[Vol-2, Issue-1, Jan-Feb, 2016]
ISSN : 2455-5304
Elem
ent

Weig
ht%

Si K
PK
SK
Mn
K
Fe K
Ni K
Cu K
Nb L

5.63
-0.02
0.00
2.90

Total
s

100.0
0

2.14
62.07
26.32
-0.04

Elem
ent

Weig
ht%

Si K
PK
SK
Mn K
Fe K
Ni K
Cu K
Nb L

8.21
0.20
0.07
3.40
2.30
60.17
25.71
-0.06

Total
s

100.0
0

Fig 7. Photographs of chemical composition of base metal
and different wt. % of SiO2

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Micro Hardness in HV

International Journal of Civil, Mechanical and Energy Science (IJCMES)
[Vol-2, Issue-1, Jan-Feb, 2016]
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ISSN : 2455-5304
5.3 MICRO HARDNESS TEST:
DISCUSSION:
From the present results, it is cleared that the dispersoid
MICRO HARDNESS TEST
content is increases, tensile strength is also increases up to
Base
300
9% addition of reinforcement, since fused SiO2 is a hard
Metal
275
ceramic embedded in nickel matrix. After addition of
SiC Chill
250
further reinforcement the tensile strength gradually
225
MS Chill
decreases from 9% to 12% addition i.e. an increase 3% of
200
SiO2. Tensile strength also increases as VHC of the chill
Cu Chill
175
increases from non metallic to metallic chill. This increase
150
in tensile strength property is mainly because of fine grain
125
structure obtained due to chilling.
0
3
6
9
12
% of SiO2
VI.
CONCLUSIONS
1.
Nickel
based
metal
matrix
composite can be produced
Fig.8. Vickers hardness values of Nickel based composites
successfully
from
a
conventional
electric induction furnace.
with different SiO2 percentages cast under the influence of
2.
Different
chill
material
and
the dispersoid content
different chills.
however
do
significantly
affect
the
mechanical
properties of
DISCUSSION:
the composites.
Figure 8depicts, the hardness qualities demonstrate the
3. Microstructure of the chilled composites is finer than that
pattern that as the rate of expansion of SiO2 is increased
of un-chilled matrix alloy with uniform distribution of SiO2
from 3 wt. % to 9 wt. % there is an increase in the
particles. Strong interfacial bond was observed with no
composite's hardness. Later there is a decrease in the
agglomeration between the matrix and the dispersoid.
hardness when SiO2 substance is extended to 12 wt. %.
4. Strength and hardness of the chilled MMC are superior to
The hardness estimations of composites cast with
those of the unchilled matrix alloy. It was found that these
distinctive chills have increases with the expanded
properties
increase with an increase in the dispersoid
extension of SiO2. The most extreme hardness was gotten
content
up
to 9wt% and then gradually decreasing the
for composite cast with 9 wt. % SiO2. There has been
properties.
significant gain in hardness values when compared with
5. It is clearly indicated that the dispersoid is uniformly
the framework mixture. There has been a significant
distributed in the matrix alloy by EDX test.
increase of 47% in hardness.
REFERENCES

5.4 TENSILE STRENGTH (N/mm2):

Ultimate Tensile Strength
700
675
650
625
600
575
550
525
500
475
450
425

Tensile Strength in
N/mm2

Base
Metal
SiC Chill
MS Chill
Cu Chill

0

3

% of SiO2

6

9

12

Fig.9. Tensile strength values of Nickel based composites
with different SiO2 percentages cast under the influence of
different chills.
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