Relationship between casting modulus and grain size in cast A356 aluminium alloys
IOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering
Microstructure of Al-Si alloy castings depends most generally on melt preparation and on the cooling rate imposed by the thermal modulus of the component. In the case of Al-Si alloys, emphasis is put during melt preparation on refinement of pro-eutectic (Al) grains and on modification of the Al-Si eutectic. Thermal analysis has been used since long to check melt preparation before casting, i.e. by analysis of the cooling curve during solidification of a sample cast in an instrumented cup. The
... nclusions drawn from such analysis are however valid for the particular cooling conditions of the cups. It thus appeared of interest to investigate how these conclusions could extrapolate to predict microstructure in complicated cast parts showing local changes in the solidification conditions. For that purpose, thermal analysis cups and instrumented sand and die castings with different thermal moduli and thus cooling rates have been made, and the whole set of cooling curves thus recorded has been analysed. A statistical analysis of the characteristic features of the cooling curves related to grain refinement in sand and die castings allowed determining the most significant parameters and expressing the cube of grain size as a polynomial of these parameters. After introduction of a further parameter quantifying melt refining an excellent correlation, with a R 2 factor of 0.99 was obtained.