This study aims to investigate the microstructure, corrosion and tribological properties of spark plasma sintered graphene nanoplatelets (GNPs) reinforced Inconel 738 low carbon composites. The matrix and reinforcement were thoroughly milled in order to ensure homogeneity. Thereafter, the milled powders were consolidated by using spark plasma sintering. The microstructural evolution and the phases formed were examined by the using scanning electron microscopy and X-ray diffractometry techniques. The corrosion analysis was investigated in acidic and basic media, while the tribological test was conducted under dry sliding conditions at varying loads. The results show that the microhardness values were significantly influenced by varying the GNPs constituents in Inconel 738LC from 384 to 459 HV0.5, while the sintered density was influenced by the sintering parameters. The corrosion response of the sintered composites in both acidic and basic media are comparable, irrespective of the varying GNPs content in the matrix. The wear performance suggests that the addition of GNPs to IN738LC, greatly enhanced the wear resistance and reduced the friction coefficient of the sintered IN738LC-GNPs composites. The improvement is attributed to the influence of the graphene-based tribofilm that formed on the sliding contact interface, which reduced friction coefficient. Likewise, graphene has a slight potential of forming continuous tribofilms at the friction interface due to its lubricity. It is thought that the GNPs reinforcement reduced the pull-out tendency, during wear activities. Graphic Abstract: [Figure not available: see fulltext.].
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Mechanics of Materials
- Metals and Alloys
- Materials Chemistry