Mechanical and Microstructural Evaluation of Squeeze Cast Al-4%Cu Alloy Using a Full-Factorial Experimental Design
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A full factorial design was employed to investigate the effect of squeeze pressure in conjunction with thermal parameters, i.e., melt and die temperatures, on the mechanical properties of a squeeze cast Al-4%Cu alloy. Considerable variations in mechanical properties existed between different test runs, and these were discussed based on cooling rates previously quantified for a squeeze-cast Al-4%Cu alloy. The completeness of a full factorial design not only identified a combination of process parameters for optimum results but also facilitated an evaluation of the minimum pressure required to eliminate porosity and influence the die temperature on the microstructure of the squeeze-cast alloy. In addition to the optimum run, particular importance was given to those runs that had more desirable levels of control factors with respect to energy consumption or tooling life. A microstructural analysis of these runs indicated the possibility of precipitation hardening that can open up further investigations toward the opportunities associated with in situ heat treatment of age-hardening, squeeze cast aluminum alloys.
KeywordsSqueeze Pressure Squeeze Casting Cool Curve Analysis Squeeze Casting Process LM24 Aluminum Alloy
The authors are grateful to the Higher Education Commission (H.E.C), Pakistan, and University of Engineering and Technology (U.E.T), Lahore (Pakistan), for making this research possible.
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