Field effects in processing lightweight materials with superior mechanical properties and microstructures

Period of Performance: 01/01/2014 - 12/31/2014

$100K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

IAP Research, Inc.
2763 Culver Avenue Array
Dayton, OH 45429
Principal Investigator

Abstract

The application of magnetic fields in processing metals and alloys has shown the potential to alter grain boundary kinetics, modify phase diagrams, as well as lower sintering and heat treat temperatures. The resulting property improvements have not been realized with current conventional methods. However, detailed studies to understand the mechanisms underlying the improvements and implementation as well as production scale up of such processes are only beginning to emerge. The proposed project develops the execution and understanding of the use of pulse magnetic fields to compact lightweight powder materials coupled with field sintering to enhance their mechanical and microstructural properties. The resulting improvements in mechanical properties via pulse field compaction combined with electric and magnetic field sintering will be evaluated for aluminum metal powders. Such powder material parts with optimal processing conditions will be developed for suitable DOD and commercial applications. Lightweight metals and alloys with superior strength and microstructure could substitute for steel in numerous transportation, energy and military applications such as in automotive /aerospace parts, lightweight armor, and projectiles.