Mechanical and tribological behavior of Al composites containing varying beryllium aluminum silicate and constant CeO<inf>2</inf>

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Abstract: The main aim of the present work is to see the performance of “Al–Beryl” composites processed via stir casting route with or without CeO2 on their mechanical, wear and corrosive properties for structural applications in heavy machinery and watercrafts. Hardness and ultimate tensile strength increased with 36% and 43%, respectively, with 9% Beryl addition. Further, effect of addition of constant 0.5 wt.% CeO2 in “Al–Beryl” composite was evaluated and remarkably improvement in corrosion resistance was observed. Tribological performance of the composites was investigated by conducting sliding wear tests against steel at different loads in dry and wet conditions. Characteristic features of adhesion, fracture and delamination were observed in SEM micrograph of the worn composite having low beryl content slid in air whereas abrasive wear predominates in water or oil. Addition of increased wt.% of beryl particles led in reduced wear of the composite at all loads. Increase in corrosion resistance by 45% decrease in weight loss with 0.5% CeO2 addition was observed. “Al6061–9% Beryl–0.5% CeO2” composite with high hardness, wear and corrosion resistance is found most promising for structural applications. Article Highlights: (1)An increase of 36% in hardness and 43% in ultimate tensile strength was found in Al composites with 9% Beryl addition;(2)Coefficient of friction was found least for “Beryl–CeO2” added composites in wet sliding conditions;(3)A transition in wear mechanism occurred with adhesion, fracture and delamination of the worn composite with low beryl content slid in air;(4)Corrosion resistance increased by 45% with 0.5% CeO2 addition in Al composites.
Beryl, Cerium oxide, Corrosion, Metal matrix composites, Sliding wear, Stir casting