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Effect of nano-carburization of mild steel on its surface hardness

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dc.contributor.advisor Daramola, Michael Olawale
dc.contributor.advisor Afolabi, A. S. Hassan, Ajoke Sherifat 2016-04-14T12:58:45Z 2016-04-14T12:58:45Z 2015-09 2016-04-14
dc.identifier.citation Hassan, Ajoke Sherifat (2015) Effect of nano-carburization of mild steel on its surface hardness, University of South Africa, Pretoria, <> en
dc.description.abstract There has been progress in the surface modification of low carbon steel in order to enhance its surface hardness. This study contributes to this by investigating the introduction of carbon nanotubes and amorphous carbon in the carburization of mild steel. In order to achieve the goal, carbon nanotubes were synthesized in a horizontal tubular reactor placed in a furnace also called the chemical vapor deposition process at a temperature of 700oC. Catalyst was produced from Iron nitrate Fe(NO3)3.9H2O and Cobalt nitrate Co(NO3)2.6H2O on CaCO3 support while acetylene C2H2 was used as the carbon source and nitrogen N2 was used as contaminant remover. The as-synthesized carbon nanotubes were purified using nitric acid HNO3 and characterized using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), thermo-gravimetric analysis (TGA) and fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). It was found that as-synthesized carbon nanotubes had varying lengths with diameters between 42-52 nm from the SEM and the TGA showed the as-synthesized CNTs with a mass loss of 78% while purified CNTs had 85% with no damage done to the structures after using the one step acid treatment. The as-synthesized and purified carbon nanotubes were used in carburizing low carbon steel (AISI 1018) at two austenitic temperatures of 750oC and 800oC and varying periods of 10-50 minutes while amorphous carbon obtained by pulverizing coal was also used as comparison. The mild steel samples were carburized with carbon nanotubes and amorphous carbon in a laboratory muffle furnace with a defined number of boost and diffusion steps. The carburizing atmosphere consisted of heating up to the varying temperatures at a speed of 10oC/minute, heating under this condition at varying periods, performing a defined number of boost and diffusion processes at the varying temperatures and cooling to room temperatures under the same condition. The carburized surfaces were observed with the Olympus SC50 optical microscope and the hardness distribution of the carburized layer was inspected with a Vickers FM 700 micro-hardness tester. The as-synthesized and purified CNT samples showed higher hardness on the surface of the mild steel than the amorphous carbon. In the same vein, the change in the microstructures of vi the steel samples indicated that good and improved surface hardness was obtained in this work with the reinforcements but with purified CNT having the highest peak surface hardness value of 191.64 ± 4.16 GPa at 800oC, as-synthesized CNT with 177.88 ± 2.35 GPa and amorphous carbon with 160.702 ± 5.79 GPa which are higher compared to the values obtained at 750oC and that of the original substrate which had a surface hardness of 145.188 ± 2.66 GPa. The percentage hardness obtained for the reinforcement with the amorphous carbon, the CNT and the pCNT showed an increase of 5.47%, 10.04% and 15.77% respectively at 750oC when compared to that of the normal substrate carburized without reinforcements. Furthermore, at 800oC, the reinforcement with the amorphous carbon, the CNT and the pCNT show a percentage hardness increase of 7.04%, 14.68% and 22.05% when compared to that of the normal substrate carburized without reinforcements. Comparing the reinforcement potential of the amorphous carbon, the CNT and the pCNT at 750oC, the percentage hardness reveal that using pCNT displayed an increase of 10.89% over that of amorphous carbon and of 6.37% over that of CNT. In addition, the use of CNT as reinforcement at 750oC displayed a percentage hardness increase of 4.83% over that of the amorphous carbon carburized at the same temperature en
dc.format.extent 1 online resource (xvi, 77 leaves) : illustrations (mostly color) en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.subject Carbon steel en
dc.subject Surface hardness en
dc.subject Reinforcement en
dc.subject Carbon nanotubes en
dc.subject Amorphous carbon en
dc.subject Carburization en
dc.subject Chemical vapor deposition en
dc.subject Characterization techniques en
dc.subject Microstructures en
dc.subject Microhardness en
dc.subject Austenitic temperature en
dc.subject.ddc 669.142
dc.subject.lcsh Steel -- Carbon content en
dc.subject.lcsh Surface hardening en
dc.subject.lcsh Carbon nanotubes en
dc.subject.lcsh Chemical vapor deposition en
dc.subject.lcsh Steel -- Microstructure en
dc.subject.lcsh Microhardness en
dc.title Effect of nano-carburization of mild steel on its surface hardness en
dc.type Dissertation en
dc.description.department Civil and Chemical Engineering en M. Tech. (Chemical Engineering)

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