Characterization of Elastic Properties in Porous Silicon Carbide Preforms Fabricated Using Polymer Waxes as Pore Formers


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Thorough elastic analysis of porous silicon carbide preforms fabricated using two different polymer waxes as pore formers is carried out. Both the amount and the mixture ratio of the waxes were varied to fabricate preforms with different pore morphologies and porosities in the range of 27–67 vol%. Results show that both the longitudinal and the shear elastic constants decrease with increasing porosity. The rate of decrease in the elastic constants follows a model based on minimum solid area up to an intermediate porosity level. Uniaxial pressure applied prior to cold isostatic pressing and sintering significantly reduces the stiffness along the press direction. For the same initial powder mixture type, the elastic anisotropy of the preforms increases with an increase in the applied uniaxial pressure. The extent of anisotropy is strongly dependent on both the SiC/wax ratio as well as the mixture ratio between the two wax types. At low pore volume fractions a higher volume content of the smaller diameter wax and at high pore volume fractions a higher volume content of larger diameter wax lead to preforms with lowest anisotropy. A map is finally proposed to describe the dependence of the preform elastic properties on the type of initial powder mixture used.