The effect of the addition of a small amount of CuO on the microstructure, hardness, fracture toughness and electrical conductivity properties of 8YSZ were investigated using 8 mol% yttria-stabilized cubic zirconia (8YSZ). The addition of 1 wt% CuO to 8YSZ powders were doped using a colloidal process. Undoped and CuO doped 8YSZ specimens were pressureless sintered at 1400 °C for 10 h. The grain size measurement results showed that the presence of CuO as a intergranular second phase at the grain boundaries of the 8YSZ gave rise to a decrease in the grain size. The fracture toughness values for undoped and 1 wt% CuO-doped 8YSZ specimens were obtained as 1.79 and 2.20 MPa.m1/2, respectively. The decrease in the grain size of the 8YSZ with CuO addition caused an increase in the fracture toughness. The electrical conductivity of the undoped and 1 wt% CuO-doped 8YSZ specimens was measured using a frequency response analyzer in the frequency range of 100 mHz–13 MHz and at the temperature range of 300–800 °C. The electrical conductivity results showed that there was a decrease in the grain interior, and specific grain boundary conductivity, with the addition of a small amount of CuO to 8YSZ. The presence of a second phase layer with high resistance at the grain boundaries of the 8YSZ caused a decrease in the specific grain boundary conductivity.
In this study, the effect of erbium oxide (Er2O3) addition on the microstructure, sinterability and mechanical properties of cubic zirconia (c-ZrO2) was investigated. 0–15 wt% Er2O3 and c-ZrO2 powders were mixed by means of colloidal processing and the specimens were sintered at different temperatures for 1 hour. The XRD results showed the existence of cubic crystal structure in all specimens. The lattice parameter of the specimens decreased with increasing Er2O3 addition up to 10 wt% and remained unchanged after this amount. The grain size of the Er2O3 doped c-ZrO2 specimens dropped up to 5 wt% Er2O3 addition and stayed almost unchanged at higher Er2O3 contents. Both hardness and fracture toughness measurements were done using Vickers hardness tester. The fracture toughness values of the undoped, 1, 5, 10 and 15 wt% Er2O3 doped c-ZrO2specimens were found to be 1.64 MPam1/2, 1.77 MPam1/2, 2.06 MPam1/2, 2.57 MPam1/2 and 2.31 MPam1/2 respectively.
In this study, Hardox 450 and HiTuf steels were boronized by pack-boriding method at 800, 900, and 1000∘C for 5 h. The phases, microstructure, hardness, and wear behavior of boride layers formed on the surface of samples were investigated using XRD, SEM, Micro-Vickers hardness testers, and a pin-on-disc tribotester, respectively. XRD analysis showed that both FeB and Fe2B phases were formed in the borided area of Hardox 450 steel, but only Fe2B phase occurred in the boride layer of the HiTuf steel. Micro-Vickers hardness results indicated that the hardness values of the boride layer decreased from the column-shaped structure to towards the matrix in both of Hardox 450 and HiTuf steels. Furthermore, the wear test results showed the coefficients of friction (COF) decreased significantly in the borided samples. The COF of the unborided Hardox 450 steel was reduced considerably from 0.29 to 0.02 by boriding treatment. Similarly, the COF of unborided HiTuf steel was significantly diminished from 0.16 to 0.04 by boriding treatment. In conclusion, the results of this study have indicated that the wear resistance of Hardox 450 and HiTuf steels can be improved by pack-boriding.