Microstructure and densification of ZrB2-SiC composites prepared by spark plasma sintering

Ipek Akin, Mikinori Hotta, Filiz Cinar Sahin, Onuralp Yucel, Gultekin Goller, Takashi Goto*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

106 Citations (Scopus)


ZrB2-SiC composites were prepared by spark plasma sintering (SPS) at temperatures of 1800-2100 °C for 180-300 s under a pressure of 20 MPa and at higher temperatures of above 2100 °C without a holding time under 10 MPa. Densification, microstructure and mechanical properties of ZrB2-SiC composites were investigated. Fully dense ZrB2-SiC composites containing 20-60 mass% SiC with a relative density of more than 99% were obtained at 2000 and 2100 °C for 180 s. Below 2120 °C, microstructures consisted of equiaxed ZrB2 grains with a size of 2-5 μm and α-SiC grains with a size of 2-4 μm. Morphological change from equiaxed to elongated α-SiC grains was observed at higher temperatures. Vickers hardness of ZrB2-SiC composites increased with increasing sintering temperature and SiC content up to 60 mass%, and ZrB2-SiC composite containing 60 mass% SiC sintered at 2100 °C for 180 s had the highest value of 26.8 GPa. The highest fracture toughness was observed for ZrB2-SiC composites containing 50 mass% SiC independent of sintering temperatures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2379-2385
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the European Ceramic Society
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2009


This work was supported by the Global COE Program “Materials Integration, Tohoku University,” MEXT, Japan and the Rare Metal Substitution Materials Development Project of the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization. The authors thank Dr. H. Kato and Dr. T. Wada (Institute for Materials Research, Tohoku University) for the strength measurement.

FundersFunder number
Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology
New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization


    • Mechanical properties
    • Microstructure
    • SiC
    • Spark plasma sintering
    • ZrB


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