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Title: Effects of Ce additions on the age hardening response of Mg–Zn alloys

The effects of Ce additions on the precipitation hardening behaviour of Mg–Zn are examined for a series of alloys, with Ce additions at both alloying and microalloying levels. The alloys are artificially aged, and studied using hardness measurement and X-ray diffraction, as well as optical and transmission electron microscopy. It is found that the age-hardening effect is driven by the formation of fine precipitates, the number density of which is related to the Zn content of the alloy. Conversely, the Ce content is found to slightly reduce hardening. When the alloy content of Ce is high, large secondary phase particles containing both Ce and Zn are present, and remain stable during solutionizing. These particles effectively reduce the amount of Zn available as solute for precipitation, and thereby reduce hardening. Combining hardness results with thermodynamic analysis of alloy solute levels also suggests that Ce can have a negative effect on hardening when present as solutes at the onset of ageing. This effect is confirmed by designing a pre-ageing heat treatment to preferentially remove Ce solutes, which is found to restore the hardening capability of an Mg–Zn–Ce alloy to the level of the Ce-free alloy. - Highlights: • The effects of Cemore » additions on precipitation in Mg–Zn alloys are examined. • Additions of Ce to Mg–Zn slightly reduce the age-hardening response. • Ce-rich secondary phase particles deplete the matrix of Zn solute. • Hardening is also decreased when Ce is present in solution. • Pre-ageing to preferentially precipitate out Ce restores hardening capabilities.« less
Authors:
;
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22476046
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Materials Characterization; Journal Volume: 101; Other Information: Copyright (c) 2014 Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam, The Netherlands, All rights reserved.; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; AGE HARDENING; CERIUM ADDITIONS; DENSITY; HARDNESS; HEAT TREATMENTS; MAGNESIUM ALLOYS; PRECIPITATION; PRECIPITATION HARDENING; THERMODYNAMICS; TRANSMISSION ELECTRON MICROSCOPY; X-RAY DIFFRACTION; ZINC ALLOYS