The effect of cobalt aluminate inoculant addition and melt-pouring temperature on the structure and mechanical properties of Ni-based superalloy was studied. The first major move to control the quality of investment cast blades and vanes was the control of grain size. Cobalt aluminate (CoAl2O4) is the most frequently utilized inoculant in the lost-wax casting process of Ni-based superalloys. The inoculant in the prime coat of moulds and pouring temperature play a significant role in grain size control. The finest surface grains were obtained when the internal surface of shell mould was coated with cobalt aluminate and subsequently pouring was at 1480°C. The influence of selected casting parameters and inoculant addition on mechanical properties was investigated on the basis of tensile, creep and hardness testing. The effect of grain refinement on mechanical properties were consistent with established theories. Tests conducted at ambient temperature indicated a beneficial effect of grain refinement both on tensile strength and hardness. In contrast at elevated temperature during creep, the reverse trend was observed.
The casting workshop was discovered with numerous artifacts, confirming the existence of the manufacturing process of metal ornaments using ceramic molds and investment casting technology in Lower Silesia (Poland) in 7-6 BC. The research has yielded significant technological information about the bronze casting field, especially the alloys that were used and the artifacts that were made from them. Based on the analyses, the model alloys were experimentally reconstructed. Taking advantage of the computer-modeling method, a geometric visualization of the bronze bracelets was performed; subsequently, we simulated pouring liquid metal in the ceramic molds and observed the alloy solidification. These steps made it possible to better understand the casting processes from the perspective of the mold technology as well as the melting and casting of alloys.
Investment casting technology that utilizes lost-wax casting is one of the most-important achievements of ancient society. In Lower Silesia, Poland (Grzybiany, Legnica county), a 7-6 BC casting workshop was discovered with numerous artifacts, confirming the existence of the manufacturing process of metal ornaments using ceramic molds. The paper presents the research of molds and casts from the Bronze and Early Iron Ages. Microscopic analyses of the casting molds were performed, along with radiographic and chemical composition tests of the artifacts (the latter employing the use of the X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy method). The clustering method was used for alloy classification. The microstructure was analyzed by means of Scanning Electron Microscopy with Energy Dispersive Spectroscopy. Conclusions from the research were utilized in further experiments