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Study of Nanoindentation Characteristics of Al/B4C/CNT Composites

Ashwin C. Gowda, D. P. Girish


Nanoindentation characterization is one of the essentialities that are used in current work to measure hardness and elastic moduli properties of Al reinforced with B4C particulates and carbon nano-tube (CNT). The nanoindentation characterization enables measurements of mechanical characteristics on nano scale. The method is very effective to understand the localized variations in mechanical behavior of the composites that are influenced by precipitation of reinforcements. The composites were synthesized en-route powder metallurgy, the matrix and reinforcements were ball milled which facilitated the study of the morphological and structural aspects involved in powder particles during structural evolution and morphological changes of powder particles during ball milling. Hardness and elastic modulus values of powder particles were measured by nanoindentation method. Nanoindentation tests were done in current work on specimens prepared from five different compositions viz. Al, Al/5 wt% B4C, Al/0.5 wt% CNT/5 wt% B4C, Al/1 wt% CNT/5 wt% B4C, Al/2 wt% CNT/5 wt% B4C scratch tests were also performed to define the tribological characteristics of materials, since scratch resistance and friction are core properties of any composite material. The nano-hardness is measured in GPa scale and is found to vary between 0.5 and 0.62 GPa, while the elastic modulus is found to vary between 110 and 122 GPa for specimens of different compositions.


Nanoindentation, nano-hardness, elastic modulus, scratch test, aluminium, boron carbide, carbon nano-tube

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