Date of Award

2017

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Department

Washkewicz College of Engineering

First Advisor

Nayfeh, Taysir

Subject Headings

Materials Science, Mechanical Engineering, Metallurgy, Nanotechnology

Abstract

Carbon Nanotubes (CNTs) with their exceptional properties will facilitate the Metal matrix composites (MMC) to exhibit good mechanical properties, thermal and electrical conductivities, corrosion resistance, etc. The critical factor that holds the development of the Metal matrix Nanocomposites (MMNC) by using CNTs is the tendency of CNTs to form clusters (agglomerations) due to their high Van der Waals attractions. Due to this factor, low density and other properties of the CNTs, there has been a delay in harnessing their ultimate potential.
Existing literature in contemporary times from the works of few researches in Nanocomposites shows the prevalence of using surfactants / dispersing agents for dispersing CNTs in the metal matrix. But the addition of these dispersing agents will form inclusions in the metal thus closing the avenue for developing ballistic electrical conductors and high purity MMNCs. Also the vol% of CNTs is limited to 1% in many cases and further increase reduces the mechanical strength. The reason for decreasing the strength is attributed to the agglomeration of CNTs and their disorderly alignment.
In this work we developed a process where total dispersion and deagglomeration of CNTs up to 5 vol% is achieved without the addition of any surfactants / dispersing agents in the Magnesium Metal matrix. The process developed in this work can be applied to other metals with proper process parameters to develop various MMNCs with exceptional properties relative to the base metal. This process will open doors for the future works for developing high strength, High electrical and thermal conductive Metal Matrix Nanocomposites.

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