Influence of the Feed Powder Composition in Mechanical Properties of AlN-Nano-Reinforced Aluminium Composites Coatings Deposited by Reactive Direct Laser Deposition
Aluminium matrix composite coatings reinforced with AlN nanopaticles have been manufactured by direct laser deposition on an AA6082 alloy substrate. The reinforcement of the composite has been generated by the direct nitridation reaction of the feed powder with the carrier gas (N2) heated by an HPDL beam during the fabrication of the coating. The coating obtained consists of nano-sized AlN particles in an aluminium matrix, and the crystalline structure of the obtained AlN depends on the characteristics of the powder used. In this work, the influence of the feed powder composition is studied by comparison among pure aluminium, Al12-Si alloy, and AA6061 alloy, on the formation ofAlNand its crystalline structure. Acorrelationwas established between the temperature distribution reached by the particles, their composition, and the nitridation reaction mechanisms. The effect of the reinforcement was evaluated by comparing the microstructure and mechanical properties (microhardness, nanoindentation) of the composite costing with non-reinforced Al coatings and uncoated AA6082. Al/AlN composite coatings with improved properties were achieved, reaching hardness values that were 65% higher than coatings without reinforcement.
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