عنوان مقاله [English]
This research investigates the effect of the addition of nano-clay particles on
the microstructure, fracture surface, and mechanical properties of the piston
aluminum alloy in the automotive engine. To this end, aluminum samples with and
without nano-particles were cast in stir and gravity conditions, respectively.
Then, these initial cylinders were machined to have standard samples for
tensile testing. Uniaxial tensile experiments were carried out in the displacement-controlled condition at a displacement rate of 1 mm/min for both reinforced and unreinforced aluminum specimens. Microstructure observations by the optical microscopy showed that the size of silicon particles increased and the size of intermetallic phases decreased due to the addition of nano-clay particles into the aluminum matrix. In addition, according to the uniaxial tensile test, the yield stress, the ultimate tensile stress, and the elongation of samples, made of the base metal, were enhanced. However, the Young modulus of specimens of the base metal decreased due to the addition of nano-clay particles. The fracture surface by the field emission scanning electron microscopy indicated that the reinforcement of the base material by nano-clay particles increased the number of cracks and decreased the total length of cracks. The mapping analysis by the Energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, which was obtained from the fracture surface of the samples, implied that the crack initiation and the propagation occurred at the area, where intermetallic phases were located. Then, the addition of nano-particles into the aluminum matrix had no significant effect on the initiation location and the propagation of micro-cracks. Further investigations into this topic were done on high-cycle and low-cycle fatigue properties of both reinforced and unreinforced aluminum samples to find the effect of the addition of nano-particles to the aluminum matrix, which will be appeared in futures. Finally, it should be noted that the overall objective was to improve the aluminum alloy with nano-particles to have higher mechanical and fatigue properties in order to be used in high-performance engines.