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Title: Grain refinement of cast zinc through magnesium inoculation: Characterisation and mechanism

It was previously found that peritectic-forming solutes are more favourable for the grain refinement of cast Al alloys than eutectic-forming solutes. In this work, we report that the eutectic-forming solute, Mg, can also significantly grain refine cast Zn. Differential thermal analysis (DTA) of a Zn–Mg alloy, in which efficient grain refinement occurred, evidenced an unexpected peak that appeared before the nucleation of η-Zn grains on the DTA spectrum. Based on extensive examination using X-ray diffraction, high resolution SEM and EDS, it was found that: (a) some faceted Zn–Mg intermetallic particles were reproducibly observed; (b) the particles were located at or near grain centres; (c) the atomic ratio of Mg to Zn in the intermetallic compound was determined to be around 1/2. Using tilting selected area diffraction (SAD) and convergent beam Kikuchi line diffraction pattern (CBKLDP) techniques, these faceted particles were identified as MgZn{sub 2} and an orientation relationship between such grain-centred MgZn{sub 2} particles and the η-Zn matrix was determined. Hence, the unexpected peak on the DTA spectrum is believed to correspond to the formation of MgZn{sub 2} particles, which act as effective heterogeneous nucleation sites in the alloy. Together with the effect of Mg solute on restricting grain growth,more » such heterogeneous nucleation is cooperatively responsible for the grain size reduction in Zn–Mg alloys. - Highlights: • A new eutectic-based grain refiner for the cast Zn was found. • The formation process of an intermetallic compound (MgZn{sub 2}) was characterised. • MgZn{sub 2} can act as potent heterogeneous nucleation sites above the liquidus. • A new OR between MgZn{sub 2} and η-Zn was determined using the CBKLDP technique.« less
Authors:
;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [1] ;  [1]
  1. School of Mechanical and Mining Engineering, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, QLD 4072 (Australia)
  2. (United Kingdom)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22476119
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Materials Characterization; Journal Volume: 106; Other Information: Copyright (c) 2015 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; BEAMS; BINARY ALLOY SYSTEMS; DIFFERENTIAL THERMAL ANALYSIS; EUTECTICS; GRAIN GROWTH; GRAIN REFINEMENT; GRAIN SIZE; INOCULATION; INTERMETALLIC COMPOUNDS; KIKUCHI LINES; MAGNESIUM; MAGNESIUM COMPOUNDS; RESOLUTION; SCANNING ELECTRON MICROSCOPY; SPECTRA; X-RAY DIFFRACTION; ZINC; ZINC COMPOUNDS