|Other iron-based materials|
Gray iron, or grey cast iron, is a type of cast iron that has a graphitic microstructure. It is named after the gray color of the fracture it forms, which is due to the presence of graphite.It is the most common cast iron and the most widely used cast material based on weight.
It is used for housings where the stiffness of the component is more important than its tensile strength, such as internal combustion engine cylinder blocks, pump housings, valve bodies, electrical boxes, and decorative castings. Grey cast iron's high thermal conductivity and specific heat capacity are often exploited to make cast iron cookware and disc brake rotors.
A typical chemical composition to obtain a graphitic microstructure is 2.5 to 4.0% carbon and 1 to 3% silicon by weight. Graphite may occupy 6 to 10% of the volume of grey iron. Silicon is important for making grey iron as opposed to white cast iron, because silicon is a graphite stabilizing element in cast iron, which means it helps the alloy produce graphite instead of iron carbides; at 3% silicon almost no carbon is held in chemical form as iron carbide. Another factor affecting graphitization is the solidification rate; the slower the rate, the greater the time for the carbon to diffuse and accumulate into graphite. A moderate cooling rate forms a more pearlitic matrix, while a fast cooling rate forms a more ferritic matrix. To achieve a fully ferritic matrix the alloy must be annealed.Rapid cooling partly or completely suppresses graphitization and leads to the formation of cementite, which is called white iron.
The graphite takes on the shape of a three-dimensional flake. In two dimensions, as a polished surface, the graphite flakes appear as fine lines. The graphite has no appreciable strength, so they can be treated as voids. The tips of the flakes act as preexisting notches at which stresses concentrate and it therefore behaves in a brittle manner.The presence of graphite flakes makes the grey iron easily machinable as they tend to crack easily across the graphite flakes. Grey iron also has very good damping capacity and hence it is often used as the base for machine tool mountings.
In the United States, the most commonly used classification for gray iron is ASTM International standard A48. 20,000 psi (140 MPa). Class 20 has a high carbon equivalent and a ferrite matrix. Higher strength gray irons, up to class 40, have lower carbon equivalents and a pearlite matrix. Gray iron above class 40 requires alloying to provide solid solution strengthening, and heat treating is used to modify the matrix. Class 80 is the highest class available, but it is extremely brittle. ASTM A247 is also commonly used to describe the graphite structure. Other ASTM standards that deal with gray iron include ASTM A126, ASTM A278, and ASTM A319.This orders gray iron into classes which correspond with its minimum tensile strength in thousands of pounds per square inch (ksi); e.g. class 20 gray iron has a minimum tensile strength of
In the automotive industry, the SAE International (SAE) standard SAE J431 is used to designate grades instead of classes. These grades are a measure of the tensile strength-to-Brinell hardness ratio.The variation of the tensile modulus of elasticity of the various grades is a reflection of the percentage of graphite in the material as such material has neither strength nor stiffness and the space occupied by graphite acts like a void, thereby creating a spongy material.
|†t/h = tensile strength/hardness|
Gray iron is a common engineering alloy because of its relatively low cost and good machinability, which results from the graphite lubricating the cut and breaking up the chips. It also has good galling and wear resistance because the graphite flakes self lubricate. The graphite also gives gray iron an excellent damping capacity because it absorbs the energy and converts it into heat.Grey iron cannot be worked (forged, extruded, rolled etc.) even at temperature.
|Gray iron (high carbon equivalent)||100–500|
|Gray iron (low carbon equivalent)||20–100|
|†Natural log of the ratio of successive amplitudes|
Gray iron also experiences less solidification shrinkage than other cast irons that do not form a graphite microstructure. The silicon promotes good corrosion resistance and increased fluidity when casting.Gray iron is generally considered easy to weld. Compared to the more modern iron alloys, gray iron has a low tensile strength and ductility; therefore, its impact and shock resistance is almost non-existent.
Steel is an alloy of iron with typically a few tenths of a percent of carbon to improve its strength and fracture resistance compared to iron. Many other elements may be present or added. Stainless steels that are corrosion- and oxidation-resistant need typically an additional 11% chromium. Because of its high tensile strength and low cost, steel is used in buildings, infrastructure, tools, ships, trains, cars, machines, electrical appliances, and weapons. Iron is the base metal of steel. Depending on the temperature, it can take two crystalline forms : body-centred cubic and face-centred cubic. The interaction of the allotropes of iron with the alloying elements, primarily carbon, gives steel and cast iron their range of unique properties.
In metalworking and jewelry making, casting is a process in which a liquid metal is delivered into a mold that contains a negative impression of the intended shape. The metal is poured into the mold through a hollow channel called a sprue. The metal and mold are then cooled, and the metal part is extracted. Casting is most often used for making complex shapes that would be difficult or uneconomical to make by other methods.
Cast iron is a group of iron-carbon alloys with a carbon content more than 2%. Its usefulness derives from its relatively low melting temperature. The alloy constituents affect its colour when fractured: white cast iron has carbide impurities which allow cracks to pass straight through, grey cast iron has graphite flakes which deflect a passing crack and initiate countless new cracks as the material breaks, and ductile cast iron has spherical graphite "nodules" which stop the crack from further progressing.
High-strength low-alloy steel (HSLA) is a type of alloy steel that provides better mechanical properties or greater resistance to corrosion than carbon steel. HSLA steels vary from other steels in that they are not made to meet a specific chemical composition but rather specific mechanical properties. They have a carbon content between 0.05 and 0.25% to retain formability and weldability. Other alloying elements include up to 2.0% manganese and small quantities of copper, nickel, niobium, nitrogen, vanadium, chromium, molybdenum, titanium, calcium, rare earth elements, or zirconium. Copper, titanium, vanadium, and niobium are added for strengthening purposes. These elements are intended to alter the microstructure of carbon steels, which is usually a ferrite-pearlite aggregate, to produce a very fine dispersion of alloy carbides in an almost pure ferrite matrix. This eliminates the toughness-reducing effect of a pearlitic volume fraction yet maintains and increases the material's strength by refining the grain size, which in the case of ferrite increases yield strength by 50% for every halving of the mean grain diameter. Precipitation strengthening plays a minor role, too. Their yield strengths can be anywhere between 250–590 megapascals (36,000–86,000 psi). Because of their higher strength and toughness HSLA steels usually require 25 to 30% more power to form, as compared to carbon steels.
Carbon steel is a steel with carbon content from about 0.05 up to 3.8 per cent by weight. The definition of carbon steel from the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) states:
Die casting is a metal casting process that is characterized by forcing molten metal under high pressure into a mould cavity. The mould cavity is created using two hardened tool steel dies which have been machined into shape and work similarly to an injection mould during the process. Most die castings are made from non-ferrous metals, specifically zinc, copper, aluminium, magnesium, lead, pewter, and tin-based alloys. Depending on the type of metal being cast, a hot- or cold-chamber machine is used.
Ductile iron, also known as ductile cast iron, nodular cast iron, spheroidal graphite iron, spheroidal graphite cast iron and SG iron, is a type of graphite-rich cast iron discovered in 1943 by Keith Millis. While most varieties of cast iron are weak in tension and brittle, ductile iron has much more impact and fatigue resistance, due to its nodular graphite inclusions.
Tempering is a process of heat treating, which is used to increase the toughness of iron-based alloys. Tempering is usually performed after hardening, to reduce some of the excess hardness, and is done by heating the metal to some temperature below the critical point for a certain period of time, then allowing it to cool in still air. The exact temperature determines the amount of hardness removed, and depends on both the specific composition of the alloy and on the desired properties in the finished product. For instance, very hard tools are often tempered at low temperatures, while springs are tempered at much higher temperatures.
Malleable iron is cast as white iron, the structure being a metastable carbide in a pearlitic matrix. Through an annealing heat treatment, the brittle structure as first cast is transformed into the malleable form. Carbon agglomerates into small roughly spherical aggregates of graphite leaving a matrix of ferrite or pearlite according to the exact heat treatment used. Three basic types of malleable iron are recognized within the casting industry: blackheart malleable iron, whiteheart malleable iron and pearlitic malleable iron.
The SAE steel grades system is a standard alloy numbering system for steel grades maintained by SAE International.
Alloy steel is steel that is alloyed with a variety of elements in total amounts between 1.0% and 50% by weight to improve its mechanical properties. Alloy steels are broken down into two groups: low alloy steels and high alloy steels. The difference between the two is disputed. Smith and Hashemi define the difference at 4.0%, while Degarmo, et al., define it at 8.0%. Most commonly, the phrase "alloy steel" refers to low-alloy steels.
6061 is a precipitation-hardened aluminium alloy, containing magnesium and silicon as its major alloying elements. Originally called "Alloy 61S", it was developed in 1935. It has good mechanical properties, exhibits good weldability, and is very commonly extruded. It is one of the most common alloys of aluminum for general-purpose use.
A chill is an object used to promote solidification in a specific portion of a metal casting mold. Normally the metal in the mould cools at a certain rate relative to thickness of the casting. When the geometry of the molding cavity prevents directional solidification from occurring naturally, a chill can be strategically placed to help promote it. There are two types of chills: internal and external chills.
Permanent mold casting is a metal casting process that employs reusable molds, usually made from metal. The most common process uses gravity to fill the mold, however gas pressure or a vacuum are also used. A variation on the typical gravity casting process, called slush casting, produces hollow castings. Common casting metals are aluminium, magnesium, and copper alloys. Other materials include tin, zinc, and lead alloys and iron and steel are also cast in graphite molds.
Dual-phase steel (DP steel) is a high-strength steel that has a ferritic–martensitic microstructure. DP steels are produced from low or medium carbon steels that are quenched from a temperature above A1 but below A3 determined from continuous cooling transformation diagram. This results in a microstructure consisting of a soft ferrite matrix containing islands of martensite as the secondary phase (martensite increases the tensile strength). Therefore, the overall behaviour of DP steels is governed by the volume fraction, morphology (size, aspect ratio, interconnectivity, etc.), the grain size and the carbon content. For achieving these microstructures, DP steels typically contain 0.06–0.15 wt.% C and 1.5-3% Mn (the former strengthens the martensite, and the latter causes solid solution strengthening in ferrite, while both stabilize the austenite), Cr & Mo (to retard pearlite or bainite formation), Si (to promote ferrite transformation), V and Nb (for precipitation strengthening and microstructure refinement). The desire to produce high strength steels with formability greater than microalloyed steel led the development of DP steels in the 1970s.
Microalloyed steel is a type of alloy steel that contains small amounts of alloying elements, including niobium, vanadium, titanium, molybdenum, zirconium, boron, and rare-earth metals. They are used to refine the grain microstructure or facilitate precipitation hardening.
Plaster mold casting is a metalworking casting process similar to sand casting except the molding material is plaster of Paris instead of sand. Like sand casting, plaster mold casting is an expendable mold process, however it can only be used with non-ferrous materials. It is used for castings as small as 30 g (1 oz) to as large as 7–10 kg (15–22 lb). Generally, the form takes less than a week to prepare. Production rates of 1–10 units/hr can be achieved with plaster molds.
Shell moulding, also known as shell-mould casting, is an expendable mold casting process that uses resin covered sand to form the mold. As compared to sand casting, this process has better dimensional accuracy, a higher productivity rate, and lower labor requirements. It is used for small to medium parts that require high precision. Shell molding was developed as a manufacturing process during the mid-20th century in Germany. It was invented by German engineer Johannes Croning. Shell mold casting is a metal casting process similar to sand casting, in that molten metal is poured into an expendable mold. However, in shell mold casting, the mold is a thin-walled shell created from applying a sand-resin mixture around a pattern. The pattern, a metal piece in the shape of the desired part, is reused to form multiple shell molds. A reusable pattern allows for higher production rates, while the disposable molds enable complex geometries to be cast. Shell mold casting requires the use of a metal pattern, oven, sand-resin mixture, dump box, and molten metal.
A casting defect is an undesired irregularity in a metal casting process. Some defects can be tolerated while others can be repaired, otherwise they must be eliminated. They are broken down into five main categories: gas porosity, shrinkage defects, mould material defects, pouring metal defects, and metallurgical defects.
Austempered Ductile Iron (ADI) is a form of ductile iron that enjoys high strength and ductility as a result of its microstructure controlled through heat treatment. While conventional ductile iron was discovered in 1943 and the austempering process had been around since the 1930s, the combination of the two technologies was not commercialized until the 1970s.