Elucidating thermal conductivity mechanism of Al-9Si based alloys with trace transition elements (Mn, Cr, V)

Yuli Zhou, Xun Zhang, Gu Zhong, Junchao Zhang, Yang Yang, Du Kang, Hutian Li, Wanqi Jie, Peter Schumacher, Jiehua LI

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The effects of trace transition elements (Mn, Cr, V) on the solidification microstructure and the thermal conductivity of Al-9Si based alloys have been investigated. It was found that the effect of Mn, Cr, V on the solidification behavior and solidification microstructure is mainly related to α-Al grains via affecting heterogeneous nucleation and growth restriction, while no significant effect on the solidification behavior and microstructure of eutectic Si was observed. Compared with factors including grain size of α-Al and morphology characteristics (e.g. size, spacing, and shape factor) of eutectic Si, the solid solubility in Al matrix is confirmed to be one of the most important factors affecting thermal conductivity. Due to the larger partition coefficient of V compared with Cr and Mn, the solid solubility and the lattice distortion of α-Al in Al-9Si-xV alloy were increased significantly, thus the thermal conductivity of alloy was decreased steeply from 171.7 to 152.3 W/m·K with the content of V increasing from 15 to 1010 ppm. A linearly fitted curve reflecting the relationship between the content of the transition elements and the thermal conductivity of alloys has been proposed, which can be used to optimize the alloy composition in subsequent remelting or recycling process. Furthermore, two thermal conductivity models (H-S model and Maxwell model) also have been used to evaluate the effect of Mn, Cr, V on thermal conductivity, in which the thermal conductivity of α-Al was corrected based on the measured solid solubility. In this way, the data correlation between the experimental and fitted value based on H-S model and Maxwell model is increased from 0.18 to 0.96. These obtained results could be helpful to precisely control the composition and further improve the thermal conductivity of Al-Si based alloy during the primary production and / or recycling process.

Original languageEnglish
Article number164446
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of alloys and compounds
Issue number25 June
Early online date7 Mar 2022
Publication statusPublished - 25 Jun 2022

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