Although ceramics have many advantages compared to metals in specific applications, they could be more widely applied if their low properties (fracture toughness, strength, electrical and thermal conductivities) are improved. Extensive research work has been devoted to the enhancement of the mechanical and functional properties of ceramics through appropriate microstructure design. This includes making composites and nanocomposites. Reinforcing ceramics by two nanoscale phases that have different morphologies and/or attributes, so-called hybrid microstructure design, is a new methodology that has been adopted to develop hybrid ceramic nanocomposites with tailored nanostructures, improved mechanical properties, and enhanced functionalities. However, development of hybrid ceramic nanocomposites reinforced with three nanoscale phases that have different dimensionalities has not been explored. The aim of this proposed research is to explore the possibility to design and fabricate advanced 3D alumina hybrid nanocomposites, reinforced with 0D, 1D, and 2D nanocarbonaceous materials, with improved properties and high performance, for cutting tool applications. The approach is to use ball milling and spark plasma sintering to produce nanocomposites that are dense and free from flaws, contain the required volume fraction of reinforcements, and have uniform distribution of the nanoscale phases. The target is to explore the possibility to achieve simultaneous and significant increase in hardness and toughness as well as improvement in electrical conductivity and thermal properties. Additionally, possible wear and corrosion mechanisms will be investigated to shed more light on the performance of the developed materials. The funding and successful execution of this project will lead to the following: (i) Advanced 3D nanostructured alumina hybrid nanocomposites for cutting tool applications, (ii) Comprehensive understanding of toughening and transport mechanisms in 3D nanostructured hybrid nanocomposites, and (iii) Comprehensive understanding of wear and corrosion mechanisms in 3D nanostructured hybrid nanocomposites.
|Effective start/end date
|15/04/19 → 15/04/22
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