Journal of Metals, Materials and Minerals

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Aluminium composites have found their strength in engineering applications such as automotive, electrical and light-weight applications. To achieve uniform microstructure and good mechanical properties, the fabrication techniques are prime factors in controlling wettability and porosity problems. This research therefore aimed for studying microstructure-mechanical property relation of SiCp-reinforced 356 aluminium composites fabricated by a cost-effective stir casting process, to which three elemental additions, Al-5Ti-B, Sr, and Mg,were investigated. Furthermore, effects of SiCp additions (0-15 wt.%) and T6 heat treatment (530C/12h + 155C/4 h) on mechanical properties of the composites were also studied. The 356 aluminium ingot was melted at 700C then stir-mixed with pre-heated SiCp of 10.5 ?m average size at 500 rpm, 615C prior to casting into cylindrical permanent molds at 650C. Microstructure examination along with hardness and tensile tests were carried out. The results showed that, with Mg and Al-5Ti-B and Sr additions, the optimum SiCp addition was observed to be at 10 wt.% to achieve microstructure homogeneity beneficial for hardness and tensile properties.

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