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ArticleName Deposition of tantalum carbide on Ti6Al4V alloy by electric discharge treatment
DOI 10.17580/tsm.2021.03.08
ArticleAuthor Burkov А. А., Kulik M. A.

Institute of Materials Science, Khabarovsk Scientific Center, Far Eastern Branch, Russian Academy of Sciences, Khabarovsk:

А. А. Burkov, Senior Researcher, Candidate of Phys.-Math. Sciences, e-mail:
M. A. Kulik, Junior Researcher


Titanium alloys attract wide attention of researchers due to the unique combination of low density, high strength, corrosion resistance, biocompatibility, etc. Therefore, the study of new methods for processing titanium and the creation of protective coatings seems relevant. Metal-ceramic coatings were obtained by electrospark treatment of a titanium alloy Ti6Al4V in a mixture of titanium granules with tantalum carbide powder. Three mixtures of granules were prepared with a TaC content of 2.4; 4.6 and 6.7 vol.%. Coatings were deposited by rectangular pulses with an energy of 0.33 J and a frequency of 1 kHz for 8 minutes in an argon stream. The increase of the volume fraction of tantalum carbide powder in the mixture of granules from 2.4 to 6.7 vol.% does not lead to a significant increase in cathode gain. The average coating thickness ranged from 29 to 36 microns. Using scanning microscopy and energy dispersive analysis methods, it was found that the coating structure is represented by a metal Ti – Ta – C matrix with large ceramic grains. According to x-ray phase analysis, it was found that tantalum carbide TaC prevails in the coating composition. It content increases with increasing powder concentration in the mixture of granules. In addition to it, there are phases of titanium carbide and tantalum subcarbibide TaC0.6, which are the products of TaC decarburization during its interaction with the titanium melt. With an increase of the tantalum carbide concentration in the mixture of granules, the hardness of TaC/Ti coatings increased from 6.1 to 8.9 GPa, which is 2–3 times higher than that of the Ti6Al4V alloy. Coefficient of friction of coatings was in the range of 0.5–0.9. Dry sliding wear tests showed that TaC/Ti coatings had a wear rate ranging from 0.1·10–5 mm3/Nm to 1.7·10–5 mm3/Nm. Thus, the use of these coatings makes it possible to increase the wear resistance of the Ti6Al4V alloy up to 128 times.

keywords Ti6Al4V alloy, electrospark granule deposition, tantalum carbide, titanium carbide, hardness, wear, friction coefficient, oxidation resistance

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