Methods for Processing Textured and Single Crystal FeZn Alloys
The addition of Zn to Fe enhances the magnetostrictive properties of Fe and the alloy has the potential for use in many magnetostrictive applications. However the low boiling point of Zn makes the preparation of the alloy difficult. This technology describes a novel approach involving explosive compaction of powders containing Fe and Zn. The resulting alloy is annealed to ensure chemical heterogeneity. The technology also offers a method for obtaining Fe-Zn single crystal alloy from liquid melts.
Currently available approaches to produce Fe rich Fe-Zn alloys include a. mixing of elemental powders, compaction and sintering, b. mechanically alloy the powders, compact, and then heat them at low temperatures. Both these approaches are time consuming and obtaining textured samples is difficult. This novel approach produces bulk textured alloys with desired composition and enhanced magnetostrictive properties. The material produced is suitable for eventual use as both structural and actuator components. Some commercial applications include acoustic and sonar devices, micro-electro-mechanical system devices, active structural systems for damping mechanical vibrations, strain gauges, load/torque sensors and positioning devices. The alloy can also be used in defense applications.
Stage of Development
A provisional patent has been filed with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. This technology has been demonstrated to work in proof-of-concept experiments. It is available for developmental research support/licensing under either exclusive or non-exclusive terms.
Sivaraman Guruswamy, Michael McCarter, Robert Pennington Corson
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