Keywords: nanocomposite, CNTs, copper, liquid phase mixing, pressing, sintering


Purpose. The research was aimed to obtain by methods of powder metallurgy a composite material based on copper with the addition of carbon nanotubes as a reinforcing component and studying the structure of this material.
Methods. The samples were made from copper powder of grade ПМС-1 (GOST 4960-2009) with a fraction of less than 45 μm. As a reinforcing component, we used multi-walled CNTs with a diameter of 8 to 28 nm, which were obtained by the CVD method. Carbon nanotubes were added to press-ready mix in an amount of 0.08 wt % in the state of suspension in a solution of polyvinyl alcohol and additional sonication for 15 minutes at a vibration frequency of 14.1 kHz. The prepared mixture was dried at a temperature of 150 ° C to release excess moisture. Samples for research were made in the form of tablets with a diameter of 12 mm and a height of 6 mm by one-sided pressing with subsequent sintering in a hydrogen atmosphere. The prototypes were made according to two technological schemes, which included double pressing and sintering. In the second sintering according to scheme 1, the temperature was 950 °С, and according to scheme 2, there was a higher temperature at 1050 °С. The study of the structural characteristics of copper powder was carried out using a scanning electron microscope (Tescan Mira 3 LMU). To determine the elemental composition of the samples, we used the method of energy dispersive spectroscopy using systems of local analysis.
Results. It has been experimentally established that the method of introducing CNTs into copper powder by liquid-phase mixing in a solution of polyvinyl alcohol and treating the suspension with ultrasound promotes a uniform distribution of CNTs in the bulk of the sintered material. After sintering, CNTs are located in a copper matrix along grain boundaries and in pores, mainly in the form of agglomerate. High-temperature second sintering at a temperature close to the melting temperature of copper leads to a decrease in the porosity of the sintered material and the formation of a microstructure, which corresponds to the structure of dispersion-strengthened composites. Pores filled with CNT agglomerate are evenly distributed in the copper matrix.
Originality. It has been found for the first time that ultrasonic treatment of a CNT suspension in a solution of polyvinyl alcohol during the mix preparation before pressing and high-temperature second sintering at a temperature close to the melting point of the matrix metal contribute to the formation of a structure characteristic of dispersion-strengthened materials.
Practical implications. The results of the work can be used for the manufacture of materials for electrical purposes.


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How to Cite
Roslyk, I. (2020). NEW COPPER BASED NANOCOMPOSITES REINFORCED WITH CARBON NANOTUBES. Metallurgical and Ore Mining Industry, (3), 18-27.