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Dry Sliding Friction and Wear Studies of Fly Ash Reinforced AA-6351 Metal Matrix Composites

DOI: 10.1155/2013/365602

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Fly ash particles are potentially used in metal matrix composites due to their low cost, low density, and availability in large quantities as waste by-products in thermal power plants. This study describes multifactor-based experiments that were applied to research and investigation on dry sliding wear system of stir-cast aluminum alloy 6351 with 5, 10, and 15?wt.% fly ash reinforced metal matrix composites (MMCs). The effects of parameters such as load, sliding speed, and percentage of fly ash on the sliding wear, specific wear rate, and friction coefficient were analyzed using Grey relational analysis on a pin-on-disc machine. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) was also employed to investigate which design parameters significantly affect the wear behavior of the composite. The results showed that the applied load exerted the greatest effect on the dry sliding wear followed by the sliding velocity. 1. Introduction Metal matrix composites (MMCs) have received substantial attention due to their reputation as stronger, stiffer, lighter, and excellent wear properties over the monolithic alloys [1–3]. Though MMCs possess superior properties, they have not been widely applied due to the complexity of fabrication [4]. The conventional stir casting is an attractive processing method for fabrication, as it is relatively inexpensive and offers wide selection of materials and processing conditions. Stir casting offers better matrix particle bonding due to stirring action of particles into melts [5]. Wear is one of the most commonly encountered industrial problems, leading to frequent replacement of components, particularly abrasion. Abrasive wear occurs when hard particles or asperities penetrate a softer surface and displace material in the form of elongated chips and slivers [6]. Extensive studies on the tribological characteristics of aluminum MMCs containing various reinforcements such as silicon carbide, alumina, and short steel fiber are already done by researchers [7–9]. The variables such as composition of the matrix, particle distribution, and interface between the particles and the matrix affect the tribological behavior of metal matrix composites. These conditions include the type of countersurface, applied load, sliding speed, contact area, geometry, and environment [10]. The principle tribological parameters such as applied load [11–13], sliding speed [14, 15], and percentage of fly ash control the friction and wear performance. Fly ash is one of the residues generated in the combustion of coal. The addition of fly ash leads to the increase in wear


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