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Technical Paper

A Comparative Investigation on the High Temperature Fatigue of Three Cast Aluminum Alloys

The high temperature fatigue behaviors of three cast aluminum alloys used for cylinder head fabrication - 319, A356 and AS7GU - are compared under isothermal fatigue at room temperature and elevated temperatures. The thermo-mechanical fatigue behavior for both out-of-phase and in-phase loading conditions (100-300°C) has also been investigated. It has been observed that all three of these alloys present a very similar behavior under both isothermal and thermo-mechanical low-cycle fatigue. Under high-cycle fatigue, however, the alloys A356 and AS7GU exhibit superior performance.
Technical Paper

Permanent Mold Casting and Creep Behavior of Mg - 4 Al - 4 X: (Ca, Ce, La, Sr) Alloys

Creep-resistant magnesium alloys for automotive powertrain applications offer significant potential for vehicle weight reduction. In this study permanent mold casting, microstructure and creep behavior have been investigated for a series of ternary magnesium alloys (Mg-4Al-4X (X: Ca, Ce, La, Sr) wt%) and AXJ530 (Mg-5Al-3Ca-0.15Sr, wt%). A permanent mold was instrumented with twelve thermocouples and mold temperature was monitored during the casting process. Average mold temperature increased from 200°C to 400°C during a typical alloy casting series (fifteen to twenty castings). The cast microstructure for all alloys consists of primary α-Mg globular phase surrounded by eutectic structure which is composed of intermetallic(s) and α-Mg magnesium phases. The primary cell size of the AXJ530 increased from 18 to 24 μm with increasing mold temperature and a similar trend is expected for all alloys.
Technical Paper

Progress Toward a Magnesium-Intensive Engine: The USAMP Magnesium Powertrain Cast Components Project

The US Automotive Materials Partnership (USAMP) and the US Department of Energy launched the Magnesium Powertrain Cast Components Project in 2001 to determine the feasibility and desirability of producing a magnesium-intensive engine; a V6 engine with a magnesium block, bedplate, oil pan, and front cover. In 2003 the Project reached mid-point and accomplished a successful Decision Gate Review for entry into the second half (Phase II) of the Project. Three tasks, comprising Phase I were completed: (1) evaluation of the most promising low-cost, creep-resistant magnesium alloys, (2) design of the engine components using the properties of the optimized alloys and creation of cost model to assess the cost/benefit of the magnesium-intensive engine, and (3) identification and prioritization of scientific research areas deemed by the project team to be critical for the use of magnesium in powertrain applications.
Technical Paper

Statistical Approaches Applied to Fatigue Test Data Analysis

The use of statistics is an important aspect in the analysis of fatigue test results. This paper describes the use of the Maximum Likelihood Estimate to analyze the fatigue results of staircase tests and Life-Regression Models (S-N curve). Two life-regression models are analyzed: a modified Basquin model and the Random Fatigue Limit (RFL) model.
Technical Paper

The Effect of Porosity Size on the Fatigue Properties in a Cast 319 Aluminum Alloy

A study was conducted to determine how the fatigue life of a 319 aluminum alloy (W319) was affected by pore size. To perform this study, two sets of microstructurally similar castings with differing levels of microporosity were created. Following room temperature fatigue testing, the pores that initiated fatigue cracks were identified and quantified. The results indicate that doubling the average initiating pore diameter yielded an approximate 30% decrease in run-out stress in the W319-T7 aluminum alloy.
Technical Paper

The Effect of Solidification Time on the Mechanical Properties in a Cast A356-T6 Aluminum Alloy

A study was conducted to determine how the mechanical properties of an A356-T6 Aluminum alloy are affected by solidification time. Solidification time has been found to have a large effect on the microstructure, especially in terms of the size of the SDAS as well as the size and distribution of porosity. Solidification time also has a large effect on the ultimate tensile strength, ductility, and fatigue properties of A356-T6 Al. Comparisons between porosity-containing (“As-Cast) and porosity-free (“As-Cast + HIP”) samples revealed that the presence of porosity had a dramatic effect on fatigue life; tensile properties remained unaffected.
Technical Paper

The USAMP Magnesium Powertrain Cast Components Project

Over the past five years, the US Automotive Materials Partnership (USAMP) has brought together representatives from DaimlerChrysler, General Motors, Ford Motor Company and over 40 other participant companies from the Mg casting industry to create and test a low-cost, Mg-alloy engine that would achieve a 15 - 20 % Mg component weight savings with no compromise in performance or durability. The block, oil pan, and front cover were redesigned to take advantage of the properties of both high-pressure die cast (HPDC) and sand cast Mg creep- resistant alloys. This paper describes the alloy selection process and the casting and testing of these new Mg-variant components. This paper will also examine the lessons learned and implications of this pre-competitive technology for future applications.