3 years ago

3D Crystallographic Alignment of Engineering Ceramics by Application of Infinitesimal Magnetic Fields.

Alexander S. Sokolov, Vincent G. Harris

Non-cubic crystals exhibit anisotropic physical and functional properties. Microscopic crystallites as constituents of polycrystalline materials are randomly oriented, thus polycrystalline ceramics lack the anisotropic properties of their monocrystalline counterparts. We propose a technology that exploits the synergy between magnetic alignment and colloidal ceramics processing, and enables to independently tune the orientation of grains in different sample regions by infinitesimal magnetic fields (<10 millitesla). The grain pivot mechanism enables the emulation of single crystals, as well as the creation of large complex-shaped ceramic elements with designed crystallographic landscapes and spatially and directionally tuned properties. Ultra-high magnetic response arises from magnetic shape anisotropy of platelet-shaped seed crystallites coated with small amounts of iron oxide nanoparticles. To control crystallographic growth directions during subsequent annealing procedures, the seeds are dispersed and aligned in a matrix of chemically identical, but much finer spherical particles. The degree of crystalline orientation in accordingly prepared aluminum oxide exceeds 99%. This technology opens an avenue to remarkably improve structural and functional properties of ceramic elements employed in numerous industrial applications.

Publisher URL: http://arxiv.org/abs/1801.05102

DOI: arXiv:1801.05102v2

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