Production Processes for Metals

production and refining metals and related processes and metals production and recycling, production of ferrous metals and production process for metals in their liquid state
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Published Date:03-08-2017
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Production, forming and joining of metals 143 Chapter 14 Production, forming and joining of metals Introduction Figure 14.1 shows the main routes that are used for processing raw metals into finished articles. Conventional forming methods start by melting the basic metal and then cast- ing the liquid into a mould. The casting may be a large prism-shaped ingot, or a continuously cast “strand”, in which case it is worked to standard sections (e.g. sheet, tube) or forged to shaped components. Shaped components are also made from stand- ard sections by machining or sheet metalworking. Components are then assembled into finished articles by joining operations (e.g. welding) which are usually carried out in conjunction with finishing operations (e.g. grinding or painting). Alternatively, the casting can be made to the final shape of the component, although some light machin- ing will usually have to be done on it. Increasing use is now being made of alternative processing routes. In powder metal- lurgy the liquid metal is atomised into small droplets which solidify to a fine powder. The powder is then hot pressed to shape (as we shall see in Chapter 19, hot-pressing is Fig. 14.1. Processing routes for metals.144 Engineering Materials 2 the method used for shaping high-technology ceramics). Melt spinning (Chapter 9) gives high cooling rates and is used to make amorphous alloys. Finally, there are a number of specialised processes in which components are formed directly from metallic com- pounds (e.g. electro forming or chemical vapour deposition). It is not our intention here to give a comprehensive survey of the forming processes listed in Fig. 14.1. This would itself take up a whole book, and details can be found in the many books on production technology. Instead, we look at the underlying prin- ciples, and relate them to the characteristics of the materials that we are dealing with. Casting We have already looked at casting structures in Chapter 9. Ingots tend to have the structure shown in Fig. 14.2. When the molten metal is poured into the mould, chill crystals nucleate on the cold walls of the mould and grow inwards. But the chill crystals are soon overtaken by the much larger columnar grains. Finally, nuclei are swept into the remaining liquid and these grow to produce equiaxed grains at the centre of the ingot. As the crystals grow they reject dissolved impurities into the re- maining liquid, causing segregation. This can lead to bands of solid impurities (e.g. iron sulphide in steel) or to gas bubbles (e.g. from dissolved nitrogen). And because most metals contract when they solidify, there will be a substantial contraction cavity at the top of the ingot as well (Fig. 14.2). These casting defects are not disastrous in an ingot. The top, containing the cavity, can be cut off. And the gas pores will be squashed flat and welded solid when the white-hot ingot is sent through the rolling mill. But there are still a number of dis- advantages in starting with ingots. Heavy segregation may persist through the rolling operations and can weaken the final product. And a great deal of work is required to roll the ingot down to the required section. Fig. 14.2. Typical ingot structure. Welded joints are usually in a state of high residual stress, and this can tear a steel plate apart if it happens to contain layers of segregated impurity.Production, forming and joining of metals 145 Fig. 14.3. Continuous casting. Many of these problems can be solved by using continuous casting (Fig. 14.3). Con- traction cavities do not form because the mould is continuously topped up with liquid metal. Segregation is reduced because the columnar grains grow over smaller dis- tances. And, because the product has a small cross-section, little work is needed to roll it to a finished section. Shaped castings must be poured with much more care than ingots. Whereas the structure of an ingot will be greatly altered by subsequent working operations, the structure of a shaped casting will directly determine the strength of the finished article. Gas pores should be avoided, so the liquid metal must be degassed to remove dissolved gases (either by adding reactive chemicals or – for high-technology applications – casting in a vacuum). Feeders must be added (Fig. 14.4) to make up the contraction. And inoculants should be added to refine the grain size (Chapter 9). This is where powder metallurgy is useful. When atomised droplets solidify, contraction is immaterial. Segregation is limited to the size of the powder particles (2 to 150 µ m); and the small powder size will give a small grain size in the hot-pressed product. Shaped castings are usually poured into moulds of sand or metal (Fig. 14.4). The first operation in sand casting is to make a pattern (from wood, metal or plastic) shaped like the required article. Sand is rammed around the pattern and the mould is then split to remove the pattern. Passages are cut through the sand for ingates and risers. The mould is then re-assembled and poured. When the casting has gone solid it is removed by destroying the mould. Metal moulds are machined from the solid. They146 Engineering Materials 2 Fig. 14.4. Sand casting. When the casting has solidified it is removed by destroying the sand mould. The casting is then “fettled” by cutting off the ingate and the feeder head. Fig. 14.5. Pressure die casting. must come apart in enough places to allow the casting to be removed. They are costly, but can be used repeatedly; and they are ideal for pressure die casting (Fig. 14.5), which gives high production rates and improved accuracy. Especially intricate cast- ings cannot be made by these methods: it is impossible to remove a complex pattern from a sand mould, and impossible to remove a complex casting from a metal one This difficulty can be overcome by using investment casting (Fig. 14.6). A wax pattern is coated with a ceramic slurry. The slurry is dried to give it strength, and is then fired (as Chapter 19 explains, this is just how we make ceramic cups and plates).Production, forming and joining of metals 147 Fig. 14.6. Investment casting. During firing the wax burns out of the ceramic mould to leave a perfectly shaped mould cavity. Working processes The working of metals and alloys to shape relies on their great plasticity: they can be deformed by large percentages, especially in compression, without breaking. But the forming pressures needed to do this can be large – as high as 3σ or even more, depend- y ing on the geometry of the process. We can see where these large pressures come from by modelling a typical forging operation (Fig. 14.7). In order to calculate the forming pressure at a given position x we apply a force f to a movable section of the forging die. If we break the forging up into four separate pieces we can arrange for it to deform when the movable die sec- tions are pushed in. The sliding of one piece over another requires a shear stress k (the shear yield stress). Now the work needed to push the die sections in must equal the work needed to shear the pieces of the forging over one another. The work done on each die section is f × u, giving a total work input of 2fu. Each sliding interface has area 2 (d/2)L. The sliding force at each interface is thus 2 (d/2)L × k. Each piece slides a distance ( 2 )u relative to its neighbour. The work absorbed at each interface is thus 2(d/2)Lk( 2)u; and there are four interfaces. The work balance thus gives 24 fu == 2(/ d2)Lk(2)u 4dLku, (14.1) or f = 2dLk. (14.2)148 Engineering Materials 2 The forming pressure, p , is then given by f f p == 2k = σ (14.3) f y dL which is just what we would expect. We get a quite different answer if we include the friction between the die and the forging. The extreme case is one of sticking friction: the coefficient of friction is so high that a shear stress k is needed to cause sliding between die and forging. The total area between the dies and piece c is given by  W d      2 −+ x Lw =− ( 2x −d)L. (14.4)           22   Piece c slides a distance 2u relative to the die surfaces, absorbing work of amount (w − 2x − d)Lk2u. (14.5)Production, forming and joining of metals 149 Fig. 14.7. A typical forging operation. (a) Overall view. (b) to (d) Modelling the plastic flow. We assume that flow only takes place in the plane of the drawing. The third dimension, measured perpendicular to the drawing, is L. Pieces a and b have a total contact area with the dies of 2dL. They slide a distance u over the dies, absorbing work of amount 2dLku. (14.6) The overall work balance is now 2fu = 4dLku + 2(w − 2x − d)Lku + 2dLku (14.7)150 Engineering Materials 2 Fig. 14.8. How the forming pressure varies with position in the forging. or w   fL =+ 2kd − x . (14.8)     2 The forming pressure is then f (/wx 2) −   p == σ 1 + . (14.9) f y  dL d   This equation is plotted in Fig. 14.8: p increases linearly from a value of σ at the edge f y of the die to a maximum of w   p =+ σ 1 (14.10)   max y   2d at the centre. It is a salutory exercise to put some numbers into eqn. (14.10): if w/d = 10, then p = 6σ . Pressures of this magnitude are likely to deform the metal-forming tools max y themselves – clearly an undesirable state of affairs. The problem can usually be solved by heating the workpiece to ≈ 0.7 T before forming, which greatly lowers σ . Or it m y may be possible to change the geometry of the process to reduce w/d. Rolling is a good example of this. From Fig. 14.9 we can write 2 2 2 (r − b) + w = r . (14.11) Provided b  2r this can be expanded to give wr = 2b. (14.12) Thus 12 / 12 / w 22 rb r b     == . (14.13)         d d d d Production, forming and joining of metals 151 Fig. 14.9. (a) In order to minimise the effects of friction, rolling operations should be carried out with minimum values of w/d. (b) Small rolls give small w/d values, but they may need to be supported by additional secondary rolls. Well-designed rolling mills therefore have rolls of small diameter. However, as Fig. 14.9 shows, these may need to be supported by additional secondary rolls which do not touch the workpiece. In fact, aluminium cooking foil is rolled by primary rolls the diameter of a pencil, backed up by a total of 18 secondary rolls. Recovery and recrystallisation When metals are forged, or rolled, or drawn to wire, they work-harden. After a deforma- tion of perhaps 80% a limit is reached, beyond which the metal cracks or fractures. Further rolling or drawing is possible if the metal is annealed (heated to about 0.6 T ). m During annealing, old, deformed grains are replaced by new, undeformed grains, and the working can be continued for a further 80% or so.152 Engineering Materials 2 Fig. 14.10. How the microstructure of a metal is changed by plastic working and annealing. (a) If the starting metal has already been annealed it will have a comparatively low dislocation density. (b) Plastic working greatly increases the dislocation density. (c) Annealing leads initially to recovery – dislocations move to low-energy positions. (d) During further annealing new grains nucleate and grow. (e) The fully recrystallised metal consists entirely of new undeformed grains. Figure 14.10 shows how the microstructure of a metal changes during plastic work- ing and annealing. If the metal has been annealed to begin with (Fig. 14.10a) it will 12 −2 have a comparatively low dislocation density (about 10 m ) and will be relatively soft and ductile. Plastic working (Fig. 14.10b) will greatly increase the dislocation 15 −2 density (to about 10 m ). The metal will work-harden and will lose ductility. Because each dislocation strains the lattice the deformed metal will have a large strain energy −3 (about 2 MJ m ). Annealing gives the atoms enough thermal energy that they can move under the driving force of this strain energy. The first process to occur is recovery (Fig. 14.10c). Because the strain fields of the closely spaced dislocations interact, the total strain energy can be reduced by rearranging the dislocations into low-angle grainProduction, forming and joining of metals 153 Fig. 14.11. Typical data for recrystallised grain size as a function of prior plastic deformation. Note that, below a critical deformation, there is not enough strain energy to nucleate the new strain-free grains. This is just like the critical undercooling needed to nucleate a solid from its liquid (see Fig. 7.4). boundaries. These boundaries form the surfaces of irregular cells – small volumes which are relatively free of dislocations. During recovery the dislocation density goes down only slightly: the hardness and ductility are almost unchanged. The major changes come from recrystallisation. New grains nucleate and grow (Fig. 14.10d) until the whole of the metal consists of undeformed grains (Fig. 14.10e). The dislocation density re- turns to its original value, as do the values of the hardness and ductility. Recrystallisation is not limited just to getting rid of work-hardening. It is also a powerful way of controlling the grain size of worked metals. Although single crystals are desirable for a few specialised applications (see Chapter 9) the metallurgist almost always seeks a fine grain size. To begin with, fine-grained metals are stronger and tougher than coarse-grained ones. And large grains can be undesirable for other reasons. For example, if the grain size of a metal sheet is comparable to the sheet thickness, the surface will rumple when the sheet is pressed to shape; and this makes it almost impossible to get a good surface finish on articles such as car-body panels or spun aluminium saucepans. The ability to control grain size by recrystallisation is due to the general rule (e.g. Chapter 11) that the harder you drive a transformation, the finer the structure you get. In the case of recrystallisation this means that the greater the prior plastic deformation (and hence the stored strain energy) the finer the recrystallised grain size (Fig. 14.11). To produce a fine-grained sheet, for example, we simply reduce the thickness by about 50% in a cold rolling operation (to give the large stored strain energy) and then anneal the sheet in a furnace (to give the fine recrystallised structure). Machining Most engineering components require at least some machining: turning, drilling, mill- ing, shaping, or grinding. The cutting tool (or the abrasive particles of the grinding154 Engineering Materials 2 Fig. 14.12. Machining. wheel) parts the chip from the workpiece by a process of plastic shear (Fig. 14.12). Thermodynamically, all that is required is the energy of the two new surfaces created when the chip peels off the surface; in reality, the work done in the plastic shear (a strain of order 1) greatly exceeds this minimum necessary energy. In addition, the friction is very high (µ ≈ 0.5) because the chip surface which bears against the tool is freshly formed, and free from adsorbed films which could reduce adhesion. This friction can be reduced by generous lubrication with water-soluble cutting fluids, which also cool the tool. Free cutting alloys have a built-in lubricant which smears across the tool face as the chip forms: lead in brass, manganese sulphide in steel. Machining is expensive – in energy, wasted material and time. Forming routes which minimise or avoid machining result in considerable economies. Joining Many of the processes used to join one metal to another are based on casting. We have already looked at fusion welding (Fig. 13.6). The most widely used welding process is arc welding: an electric arc is struck between an electrode of filler metal and the workpieces, providing the heat needed to melt the filler and fuse it to the parent plates. The electrode is coated with a flux which melts and forms a protective cover on the molten metal. In submerged arc welding, used for welding thick sections automatic- ally, the arc is formed beneath a pool of molten flux. In gas welding the heat source is an oxyacetylene flame. In spot welding the metal sheets to be joined are pressed to- gether between thick copper electrodes and fused together locally by a heavy current. Small, precise welds can be made using either an electron beam or a laser beam as the heat source.Production, forming and joining of metals 155 Brazing and soldering are also fine-scale casting processes. But they use filler metals which melt more easily than the parent metal (see Table 4.1). The filler does not join to the parent metal by fusion (melting together). Instead, the filler spreads over, or wets, the solid parent metal and, when it solidifies, becomes firmly stuck to it. True metal-to- metal contact is essential for good wetting. Before brazing, the parent surfaces are either mechanically abraded or acid pickled to remove as much of the surface oxide film as possible. Then a flux is added which chemically reduces any oxide that forms during the heating cycle. Specialised brazing operations are done in a vacuum furnace which virtually eliminates oxide formation. Adhesives, increasingly used in engineering applications, do not necessarily require the application of heat. A thin film of epoxy, or other polymer, is spread on the surfaces to be joined, which are then brought together under pressure for long enough for the adhesive to polymerise or set. Special methods are required with adhesives, but they offer great potential for design. Metal parts are also joined by a range of fasteners: rivets, bolts, or tabs. In using them, the stress concentration at the fastener or its hole must be allowed for: fracture frequently starts at a fastening point. Surface engineering Often it is the properties of a surface which are critical in an engineering application. Examples are components which must withstand wear; or exhibit low friction; or resist oxidation or corrosion. Then the desired properties can often be achieved by creating a thin surface layer with good (but expensive) properties on a section of poorer (but cheaper) metal, offering great economies of production. Surface treatments such as carburising or nitriding give hard surface layers, which give good wear and fatigue resistance. In carburising, a steel component is heated into the austenite region. Carbon is then diffused into the surface until its concentration rises to 0.8% or more. Finally the component is quenched into oil, transforming the surface into hard martensite. Steels for nitriding contain aluminium: when nitrogen is diffused into the surface it reacts to form aluminium nitride, which hardens the surface by precipitation hardening. More recently ion implantation has been used: for- eign ions are accelerated in a strong electric field and are implanted into the surface. Finally, laser heat treatment has been developed as a powerful method for producing hard surfaces. Here the surface of the steel is scanned with a laser beam. As the beam passes over a region of the surface it heats it into the austenite region. When the beam passes on, the surface it leaves behind is rapidly quenched by the cold metal beneath to produce martensite. Energy-efficient forming Many of the processes used for working metals are energy-intensive. Large amounts of energy are needed to melt metals, to roll them to sections, to machine them or to weld them together. Broadly speaking, the more steps there are between raw metal156 Engineering Materials 2 and finished article (see Fig. 14.1) then the greater is the cost of production. There is thus a big incentive to minimise the number of processing stages and to maximise the efficiency of the remaining operations. This is not new. For centuries, lead sheet for organ pipes has been made in a single-stage casting operation. The Victorians were the pioneers of pouring intricate iron castings which needed the minimum of machining. Modern processes which are achieving substantial energy savings include the single- stage casting of thin wires or ribbons (melt spinning, see Chapter 9) or the spray deposition of “atomised” liquid metal to give semi-finished seamless tubes. But modi- fications of conventional processes can give useful economies too. In examining a production line it is always worth questioning whether a change in processing method could be introduced with economic benefits. Background reading M. F. Ashby and D. R. H. Jones, Engineering Materials I, 2nd edition, Butterworth-Heinemann, 1996. Further reading S. Kalpakjian, Manufacturing Processes for Engineering Materials, Addison-Wesley, 1984. J. A. Schey, Introduction to Manufacturing Processes, McGraw-Hill Kogakusha, 1977. J. M. Alexander and R. C. Brewer, Manufacturing Properties of Materials, Van Nostrand, 1968. G. J. Davies, Solidification and Casting, Applied Science Publishers, 1973. C. R. Calladine, Plasticity for Engineers, Ellis Horwood, 1985. G. Parrish and G. S. Harper, Production Gas Carburising, Pergamon, 1985. J. Campbell, Castings, Butterworth-Heinemann, 1991. Problems 14.1 Estimate the percentage volume contraction due to solidification in pure copper. –3 Use the following data: T = 1083°C; density of solid copper at 20°C = 8.96 Mg m ; m –1 average coefficient of thermal expansion in the range 20 to 1083°C = 20.6 M K ; –3 density of liquid copper at T = 8.00 Mg m . m Answer: 5%. 14.2 A silver replica of a holly leaf is to be made by investment casting. (A natural leaf is coated with ceramic slurry which is then dried and fired. During firing the leaf burns away, leaving a mould cavity.) The thickness of the leaf is 0.4 mm. Calcu- late the liquid head needed to force the molten silver into the mould cavity. It can be assumed that molten silver does not wet the mould walls. Hint: the pressure needed to force a non-wetting liquid into a parallel-sided cavity of thickness t is given by T p = (/ t 2) Production, forming and joining of metals 157 where T is the surface tension of the liquid. The density and surface tension of –3 –1 molten silver are 9.4 Mg m and 0.90 Nm . Answer: 49 mm. 14.3 Aluminium sheet is to be rolled according to the following parameters: starting thickness 1 mm, reduced thickness 0.8 mm, yield strength 100 MPa. What roll radius should be chosen to keep the forming pressure below 200 MPa? Answer: 16.2 mm, or less. 14.4 Aluminium sheet is to be rolled according to the following parameters: sheet width 300 mm, starting thickness 1 mm, reduced thickness 0.8 mm, yield strength 100 MPa, maximum forming pressure 200 MPa, roll radius 16.2 mm, roll length 300 mm. Calculate the force F that the rolling pressure will exert on each roll. Hint: use the average forming pressure, p , shown in Fig. 14.8. av The design states that the roll must not deflect by more than 0.01 mm at its centre. To achieve this bending stiffness, each roll is to be backed up by one secondary roll as shown in Fig. 14.9(b). Calculate the secondary roll radius needed to meet the specification. The central deflection of the secondary roll is given by 3 5FL δ = 384 EI where L is the roll length and E is the Young’s modulus of the roll material. I, the second moment of area of the roll section, is given by 4 Ir = π /4 s where r is the secondary roll radius. The secondary roll is made from steel, with s E = 210 GPa. You may neglect the bending stiffness of the primary roll. Answers: F = 81 kN; r = 64.5 mm. s 14.5 Copper capillary fittings are to be used to solder copper water pipes together as shown below: † r F F Solder layer w The joint is designed so that the solder layer will yield in shear at the same axial load F that causes the main tube to fail by tensile yield. Estimate the required value of W, given the following data: t = 1 mm; σ (copper) = 120 MPa; σ (solder) y y = 10 MPa. Answer: 24 mm.158 Engineering Materials 2 14.6 A piece of plain carbon steel containing 0.2 wt% carbon was case-carburised to give a case depth of 0.3 mm. The carburising was done at a temperature of 1000°C. The Fe–C phase diagram shows that, at this temperature, the iron can dissolve carbon to a maximum concentration of 1.4 wt%. Diffusion of carbon into the steel will almost immediately raise the level of carbon in the steel to a constant value of 1.4 wt% just beneath the surface of the steel. However, the concentration of carbon well below the surface will increase more slowly towards the maximum value of 1.4 wt% because of the time needed for the carbon to diffuse into the interior of the steel. The diffusion of carbon into the steel is described by the time-dependent diffu- sion equation  x    Cx( ,t) =− (C C) 1 − erf + C. s00     2 Dt   The symbols have the meanings: C, concentration of carbon at a distance x below the surface after time t; C , 1.4 wt% C; C , 0.2 wt% C; D, diffusion coefficient for s 0 carbon in steel. The “error function”, erf(y), is given by y 2 2 −Z erf()yZ = e d . ∫ π 0 The following table gives values for this integral. y 0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 erf(y) 0 0.11 0.22 0.33 0.43 0.52 0.60 0.68 y 0.8 0.9 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 ∞ erf(y) 0.74 0.80 0.84 0.88 0.91 0.93 0.95 0.97 1.00 The diffusion coefficient may be taken as −1 −125 kJ mol   −− 62 1 D =×91 0 m s exp   RT   where R is the gas constant and T is the absolute temperature. Calculate the time required for carburisation, if the depth of the case is taken to be the value of x for which C = 0.5 wt% carbon. Answer: 8.8 minutes.Ceramics and glasses 159 B. Ceramics and glasses160 Engineering Materials 2Ceramics and glasses 161 Chapter 15 Ceramics and glasses Introduction If you have ever dropped a plate on the kitchen floor and seen it disintegrate, you might question whether ceramics have a role as load-bearing materials in engineering. But any friend with a historical perspective will enlighten you. Ceramic structures are larger and have survived longer than any other works. The great pyramid of Giza is solid ceramic (nearly 1,000,000 tonnes of it); so is the Parthenon, the Forum, the Great Wall of China. The first cutting tools and weapons were made of flint – a glass; and pottery from 5000 bc survives to the present day. Ceramics may not be as tough as metals, but for resistance to corrosion, wear, decay and corruption, they are unsurpassed. Today, cement and concrete replace stone in most large structures. But cement, too, is a ceramic: a complicated but fascinating one. The understanding of its structure, and how it forms, is better now than it used to be, and has led to the development of special high-strength cement pastes which can compete with polymers and metals in certain applications. But the most exciting of all is the development, in the past 20 years, of a range of high-performance engineering ceramics. They can replace, and greatly improve on, metals in many very demanding applications. Cutting tools made of sialons or of dense alumina can cut faster and last longer than the best metal tools. Engineering ceramics are highly wear-resistant: they are used to clad the leading edges of agri- cultural machinery like harrows, increasing the life by 10 times. They are inert and biocompatible, so they are good for making artificial joints (where wear is a big prob- lem) and other implants. And, because they have high melting points, they can stand much higher temperatures than metals can: vast development programs in Japan, the US and Europe aim to put increasing quantities of ceramics into reciprocating engines, turbines and turbochargers. In the next decade the potential market is estimated at 1 billion per year. Even the toughness of ceramics has been improved: modern body- armour is made of plates of boron carbide or of alumina, sewn into a fabric vest. The next six chapters of this book focus on ceramics and glasses: non-metallic, inorganic solids. Five classes of materials are of interest to us here: (a) Glasses, all of them based on silica (SiO ), with additions to reduce the melting 2 point, or give other special properties. (b) The traditional vitreous ceramics, or clay products, used in vast quantities for plates and cups, sanitary ware, tiles, bricks, and so forth. (c) The new high-performance ceramics, now finding application for cutting tools, dies, engine parts and wear-resistant parts.162 Engineering Materials 2 (d) Cement and concrete: a complex ceramic with many phases, and one of three essen- tial bulk materials of civil engineering. (e) Rocks and minerals, including ice. As with metals, the number of different ceramics is vast. But there is no need to remember them all: the generic ceramics listed below (and which you should re- member) embody the important features; others can be understood in terms of these. Although their properties differ widely, they all have one feature in common: they are intrinsically brittle, and it is this that dictates the way in which they can be used. They are, potentially or actually, cheap. Most ceramics are compounds of oxygen, carbon or nitrogen with metals like aluminium or silicon; all five are among the most plentiful and widespread elements in the Earth’s crust. The processing costs may be high, but the ingredients are almost as cheap as dirt: dirt, after all, is a ceramic. The generic ceramics and glasses Glasses Glasses are used in enormous quantities: the annual tonnage is not far below that of aluminium. As much as 80% of the surface area of a modern office block can be glass; and glass is used in a load-bearing capacity in car windows, containers, diving bells and vacuum equipment. All important glasses are based on silica (SiO ). Two are of 2 primary interest: common window glass, and the temperature-resisting borosilicate glasses. Table 15.1 gives details. Table 15.1. Generic glasses Glass Typical composition (wt%) Typical uses Soda-lime glass 70 SiO , 10 CaO, 15 Na O Windows, bottles, etc.; easily formed and shaped. 2 2 Borosilicate glass 80 SiO , 15 B O , 5 Na O Pyrex; cooking and chemical glassware; high- 2 2 3 2 temperature strength, low coefficient of expansion, good thermal shock resistance. Vitreous ceramics Potters have been respected members of society since ancient times. Their products have survived the ravages of time better than any other; the pottery of an era or civilisa- tion often gives the clearest picture of its state of development and its customs. Mod- ern pottery, porcelain, tiles, and structural and refractory bricks are made by processes which, though automated, differ very little from those of 2000 years ago. All are made from clays, which are formed in the wet, plastic state and then dried and fired. After firing, they consist of crystalline phases (mostly silicates) held together by a glassy phase based, as always, on silica (SiO ). The glassy phase forms and melts when the 2 clay is fired, and spreads around the surface of the inert, but strong, crystalline phases, bonding them together. The important information is summarised in Table 15.2.

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