Carlos F. Gutierrez-Gonzalez, Nestor W. Solis Pinargote, Said Agouram,
Pavel Y. Peretyagin, Sonia Lopez-Esteban and Ramon Torrecillas
This work describes a whole processing route for obtaining dense and nanostructured zirconia-nickel composites with low contents of metallic phase (1–3.5 vol%). For the processing route, a combinationof spray-freezing and lyophilization has been proposed. After the calcination and reduction of the resultingpowders an X-ray and HRTEM characterization has been performed. This showed the formation of pure zirconia and nickel, well dispersed and homogeneously distributed, nanostructured phases. The obtainedpowders were subsequently sintered by Spark Plasma Sintering (SPS). As a result, dense ZrO2 Ni composites were obtained, revealing that the sizes of the metal particles were kept in the nanometer rangeand appear homogeneously and well dispersed into the ceramic matrix. The mechanical behavior of these materials was evaluated by means of the Vickers hardness, showing and increment of about 25% with respect to pure zirconia with only a Ni concentration of 1 vol%.
Spark plasma sintering, nanomaterials, nanocomposites, nanoceramics, powder materials, zirconia-nickel composites, mechanical properties.