Title: Review: carbon nanotube dispersal mechanisms in the fabrication of powder metallurgy metal matrix composites and effects on mechanical properties

Authors: B.J. Rael; T.A. Khraishi

Addresses: Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87131, USA ' Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87131, USA

Abstract: This review outlines recent developments carried out by researchers in the fabrication of carbon nanotube metal matrix composites (CNT/MMCs) and their resulting material properties. More specifically, this review focuses on various CNT dispersal mechanisms in the fabrication of CNT/MMCs via the powder metallurgy method (PM). PM techniques have emerged as an attractive fabrication route for composite mixtures with constituents on the sub-micron to nano scale. The state and quality of CNT dispersion in the starting composite powder mixture is crucial to gain full advantage of subsequent consolidation/thermal processing phases in the PM fabrication route. Current review shows comprehensive approaches, undertaken globally, in obtaining optimal CNT dispersions in metal matrix systems utilising a variety of techniques. The present review brings into focus the critical issues which affect the mechanical performances of CNT reinforced MMCs that include: CNT dispersal, CNT/metal transition layer, compatibility of CNTs in metal systems, and CNT strengthening mechanisms.

Keywords: metal-matrix composites; MMCs; carbon nanotubes; CNTs; powder metallurgy; carbon nanotube dispersion; material properties; mechanical properties; nanotechnology; transition layers; compatibility; strengthening.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTAMM.2013.062164

International Journal of Theoretical and Applied Multiscale Mechanics, 2013 Vol.2 No.4, pp.323 - 360

Received: 11 Oct 2013
Accepted: 27 Jan 2014

Published online: 31 May 2014 *

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