Studies on Carbon Fiber Reinforced Aluminum Based Composites 2017-28-1984
Importance of fibers as reinforcements in metal matrices has long been recognized. It is only because of this realization that many industries like aerospace and to some extent the automobile industry relies entirely on advanced composite materials for their conflicting demands of high performance and lightweight materials. However most of the work in these areas has been limited or confined to patents created by the defense and automotive sectors. The efforts to commercialize these materials have been restricted due to high cost of the reinforcements and the manufacturing processes used.
In this work an attempt has been made to infiltrate the Carbon fibers by imparting Nickel and Salt based coatings to fiber surfaces with commercial purity aluminum and A356 alloy. Infiltration has been performed in ambient atmosphere and also under vacuum. The carbon fibers have been successfully infiltrated with K2ZrF6 salt coatings and were hot pressed to required shapes. The alloy was age-hardened and the hardness of the A356 alloy and its carbon fiber reinforced composites was compared. Tensile strength of the alloy was evaluated at peak hardness for both the alloy and the composite and the properties of the A356 composite on incorporating with around 45% volume fraction of carbon fibers.