In addition to a change in silicon morphology, modification of aluminium-silicon alloys with strontium or sodium increases the size of the eutectic grains. To determine the mechanism responsible, eutectic solidification in commercial purity and ultra-high purity aluminium-silicon alloys, with and without strontium additions, was examined by a quenching technique. In the commercial unmodified alloy, nucleation was prolific while in the high-purity unmodified alloy few eutectic grains nucleated. The addition of strontium to the commercial alloy reduced the number of eutectic grains that nucleated. Addition of strontium to the high-purity alloy did not significantly alter nucleation. It is concluded that commercial purity alloys contain a large number of potent nuclei that are susceptible to poisoning by impurity modification. The flake-to-fibre transition that occurs with impurity modification is shown to be independent of any change in eutectic nucleation mode and frequency.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Ceramics and Composites
- Polymers and Plastics
- Metals and Alloys