The design, microstructure and mechanical properties of B4C/6061Al neutron absorber composites fabricated by SPS

H. S. Chen, W. X. Wang, Y. L. Li, J. Zhou, H. H. Nie, Q. C. Wu

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In this study, Monte Carlo N-Particle transport program (MCNP) is first used to calculate the neutron transmission ratio of B4C/6061Al neutron absorber composites(NACs) with 5 vol.%-40 vol.% B4C particle content at different thickness in vacuum. Then the composites have been synthesized by means of ball milling followed by spark plasma sintering (SPS). The effects of B4C particle content on microstructure and mechanical properties of composite were experimentally investigated. Results show that the neutron transmission ratio decreased with the increase of B4C particle content and the thickness of plate. The B4C particles were homogeneously distributed in the metal matrix. Density was found to decrease with the increase of B4C volume fraction. Reaction products of Ti2B5, AlB12 and B were observed and identified in the composites. The microscopic electrical discharge in the gaps between the particles can generate plasma which can improve the particle/matrix interfacial bonding strength. With the increase of particle content, the strength of the NACs first increased and then decreased while elongation to fracture was almost decreased. The strengthening mechanism can be attributed to grain refinement, dislocation strengthening, load transfer effect and Orowan strengthening in NACs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)360-367
Number of pages8
JournalMaterials and Design
StatePublished - Mar 15 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering

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