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Ignition Phenomena and Reaction Mechanisms of the Self-Propagating High-Temperature Synthesis Reaction in the Titanium—Carbon—Aluminum System

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The effect of the addition of aluminum on the ignition and self-propagating high-temperature synthesis (SHS) reaction between titanium and carbon was experimentally investigated. Although TiC was the only product compound in the final product, the reaction between titanium and aluminum was believed to occur before the ignition of the reaction between titanium and carbon, as evidenced by a hump that appeared in the temperature profile during heating. The ignition temperature of the reaction between titanium and carbon was significantly decreased by the addition of aluminum. This was explained by the fact that the aluminum provides an easier route for reactant mass transfer, thus significantly increasing the reaction rate of the reaction between titanium and carbon. As the temperature was increased to beyond the melting point of aluminum during heating, aluminum melted and titanium dissolved into it. As the temperature was increased further (1050°C), the titanium-containing aluminum spread over the carbon particles. Ignition is believed to have occurred by the reaction of titanium and carbon at the interface by the diffusion of titanium through the aluminum melt to the interface. The rate of heating and the density of the reactant compact also affected the ignition temperature. These were explained by their influence on the extent of the capillary spreading of the titanium-containing aluminum melt on the carbon particles or by the formation of a TiAlx layer at the interface between the aluminum melt and the titanium particles. Fracture surfaces of the product showed three different types of morphology, i.e., discrete particles, groups of grains similar to sintered bodies, and unreacted reactant particles. A possible reaction mechanism was proposed that describes the ignition process and explains the formation of each type of product.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Chemical Engineering, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan 70101, Republic of China

Publication date: 1997-01-01

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