Transactions of Nonferrous Metals Society of China
JOURNAL OF RAILWAY SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING
|Vol. 15 No. 1 February 2005|
（School of Mechanical Engineering, Chongqing University, Chongqing 400044, China）
Abstract:Micro plasma oxidation (MPO) has recently been investigated as a novel, rapid and effective means to provide modified surfaces with improved properties of load bearing and wear resistance on light alloys particularly aluminum alloys. MPO is a multifactor-controlled process, these factors must be controlled to produce high quality coatings. The main research emphasis in MPO coating development over the past years seems to be the attainment of higher hardness levels and thick coatings. The porosity of MPO coating is the most complex phenomenon affecting the distribution, levels and the measurements of the hardness; and it is controlled by suitable selection of important parameters such as the electrical conditions. Ceramics coatings were synthesized on Al substrate by MPO to examine the effects of adding a cathodic phase alternated with anodic-cathodic current on the porosity and hardness characteristics of coatings by X-ray diffraction(XRD), scanning electron microscopy(SEM), and microhardness tester. The coatings produced by the combined mode are more dense and less porous than that by the anodic-cathodic mode. Microhardness test shows that the coatings produced by the combined mode exhibit both the highest hardness, and less reduction percentage in hardness with increasing the coatings thickness. These improvements become more significant for the polished and thicker coatings.
Key words: micro plasma oxidation (MPO); aluminum alloys; hardness; porosity