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Effect of Microstructure on Sliding-Wear Properties of Liquid-Phase-Sintered α-SiC

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We have studied, for the first time, the effect of the content of intergranular phase and grain size on the sliding-wear resistance of pressureless, liquid-phase-sintered (LPS) α-SiC (silicon carbide) ceramics. It was found that the sliding-wear behavior of these ceramics is similar to what is observed in other polycrystalline ceramics: initial mild, plasticity-controlled wear followed by severe, fracture-controlled wear, with well-defined wear transition. We have found that the increase in the content of intergranular phase and the grain coarsening leads to the degradation of the sliding-wear resistance in LPS α-SiC ceramics. A mechanistic model is used to rationalize these wear results, and to provide guidelines for the design and fabrication of low cost, highly wear-resistant SiC-based ceramics. This is likely to have important implications because SiC-based materials are being used increasingly in contact-mechanical and tribological applications.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Departamento de Electrónica e Ingeniería Electromecánica, Escuela de Ingenierías Industriales, Universidad de Extremadura, 06071 Badajoz, Spain 2: Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Institute of Materials Science, University of Connecticut, Storrs, Connecticut 06269-3136

Publication date: 01 August 2005

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