Metallurgical and Materials Transactions A

, Volume 43, Issue 13, pp 5258–5270 | Cite as

Interplay Between Residual Stresses, Microstructure, Process Variables and Engine Block Casting Integrity

  • Anthony LombardiEmail author
  • Francesco D’Elia
  • Comondore Ravindran
  • Dimitry Sediako
  • B. S. Murty
  • Robert MacKay


The replacement of nodular cast iron with 319 type aluminum (Al) alloys in gasoline engine blocks is an example of the shift towards the use of lighter alloys in the automotive industry. However, excessive residual stress along the cylinder bore may lead to bore distortion, significantly reducing engine operating efficiency. In the current study, microstructure, mechanical properties and residual stress were characterized along the cylinder bridge of engine blocks following thermal sand reclamation (TSR), T7 heat treatment, and service testing of the casting. Neutron diffraction was effectively used to quantify the residual stress along both the Al cylinder bridge and the adjacent gray cast iron cylinder liners in the hoop, radial, and axial orientations with respect to the cylinder axis. The results suggest that an increase in cooling rate along the cylinder caused a significant refinement in microstructure at the bottom of the cylinder. In turn, this suggested an increase in alloy strength at the bottom of the cylinder relative to the top. This increased strength at the bottom of the cylinder likely reduced the susceptibility of the cylinder to rapid relief of residual stress at elevated temperature. In contrast, the coarse microstructure at the top of the cylinder likely triggered stress relief at an elevated temperature.


Residual Stress Cylinder Liner Gray Cast Iron Gray Iron Engine Block 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



The authors are grateful to AUTO21 Network of Centres of Excellence and the Natural Sciences and Research Council of Canada (NSERC) for their financial support. The authors thank Nemak of Canada; the Canadian Neutron Beam Centre (CNBC) in Chalk River, Canada; Mr. Alan Machin and Dr. Sophie Lun Sin of Ryerson University; and Camden Hubbard of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). The authors also thank Professor Alex McLean of the University of Toronto for his review and useful comments. Finally, the authors are grateful to the members of the Center for Near-Net-Shape Processing of Materials at Ryerson University and the members of the Micro-Nano research group at the Indian Institute of Technology Madras for assistance during this project.


  1. 1.
    J.R. Davis: ASM Specialty Handbook: Aluminum and Aluminum Alloys, ASM International, Materials Park, OH, 1993.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Y. Ling, Z. Xu, and C. Defrancq: 2 nd International Aluminum Casting Technology Symposium, 2002, Columbus, OH, pp. 117–20.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    M.J. Moran and H.N. Shapiro: Fundamentals of Engineering Thermodynamics, 5th ed., Wiley, New York, NY, 2004, pp. 401–04.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    X. Su, J. Jan, J. Lasecki, and J. Allison: 1 st International Symposium on Metallurgical Modelling for Aluminum Alloys, Pittsburgh, PA, 2003, pp. 63–68.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    E. Carrera, A. Rodriguez, J. Talamantes, S. Valtierra, and R. Colas: J. Mater. Process. Technol., 2007, vol. 189, pp. 206–10.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    M. Li, R. Vijayaraghavan, C. Wolverton, and J. Allison: 1 st International Symposium on Metallurgical Modelling for Aluminum Alloys, Pittsburgh, PA, 2003, pp. 79–86.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    M. Tiryakioglu and G.E. Totten: Heat Treating: Proceedings of the 18 th Conference, Rosemont, IL, 1998, pp. 156–65.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    A. Lombardi, F. D’Elia, A. Machin, C. Ravindran, and R. MacKay: AFS Trans., 2011, vol. 119, pp. 229–38.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    M. Flemings: Solidification Processing, McGraw-Hill College, New York, NY, 1974.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    R. Torres, J. Esparza, E. Velasco, S. Garcia-Luna, and R. Colas: Int. J. Microstruct. Mater. Properties, 2006, vol. 1, pp. 129–38.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    A. Lombardi, F. D’Elia, C. Ravindran, B.S. Murty, and R. MacKay: Trans. Indian Inst. Met., 2011, vol. 64, pp. 7–11.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Z. Li, A.M. Samuel, F.H. Samuel, C. Ravindran, and S. Valtierra: J. Mater. Sci., 2003, vol. 38, pp. 1203–18.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    A.M. Samuel, J. Gauthier, and F.H. Samuel: Metall. Mater. Trans. A, 1996, vol. 27A, pp. 1785–98.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    G. Garcia-Garcia, J. Espinoza-Cuadra, and H. Mancha-Molinar: Mater. Des., 2007, vol. 28, pp. 428–33.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    J. Hwang, R. Banerjee, H.W. Doty, and M. Kaufman: Acta Mater., 2009, vol. 57, pp. 1308–17.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    D. Porter and K. Easterling: Phase Transformations in Metals and Alloys, 2nd ed., Chapman & Hall, London, U.K., 1992.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    F.J. Tavitas-Medrano, S. Valtierra, J.E. Gruzleski, F.H. Samuel, and H.W. Doty: AFS Trans., 2008, vol. 116, pp. 99–114.Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    B. Skrotzki, G.J. Shiflet, and E.A. Starke: Metall. Mater. Trans. A., 1996, vol. 27A, pp. 3431–44.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    G.E. Deiter: Mechanical Metallurgy, 2nd ed., McGraw-Hill International, London, U.K., 1981, pp. 211–19.Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    G.E. Totten: Handbook of Residual Stress and Deformation of Steel, ASM International, Materials Park, OH, 2002, pp. 89–91.Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    J.S. Robinson and D.A. Tanner: Mater. Sci. Forum, 2002, vols. 404–407, pp. 355–60.Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    J.S. Robinson and D.A. Tanner: Mater. Sci. Technol., 2003, vol. 19, pp. 512–18.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    J.S. Robinson, D.A. Tanner, C.E. Truman, and R.C. Wimpory: Exp. Mech., 2011, vol. 51, pp. 981–93.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    D. Sediako, A. Lombardi, F. D’Elia, C. Ravindran, A. Machin, R.B. Rogge, and R. MacKay: COM 2011 Conference Proceedings, Montreal, QC, Canada, 2011.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Minerals, Metals & Materials Society and ASM International 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anthony Lombardi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Francesco D’Elia
    • 1
  • Comondore Ravindran
    • 1
  • Dimitry Sediako
    • 2
  • B. S. Murty
    • 3
  • Robert MacKay
    • 4
  1. 1.Centre for Near-Net-Shape Processing of MaterialsRyerson UniversityTorontoCanada
  2. 2.Canadian Neutron Beam CentreNational Research CouncilChalk RiverCanada
  3. 3.Department of Metallurgical and Materials EngineeringIndian Institute of Technology MadrasChennaiIndia
  4. 4.Nemak of Canada CorporationWindsorCanada

Personalised recommendations