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We report the preparation and thermoelectric properties of oriented higher manganese silicide (HMS) with a composition of MnSi1.73 bulk. The grain alignment and densification were achieved by rotating high magnetic field and spark plasma sintering (SPS) techniques, respectively. The easy magnetization axis of MnSi1.73 was found to be c-axis, and the applied magnetic field of 2 T was strong enough to rotate the powder with a mean grain size of 1 μm. The c-axis of grains was oriented when applying the magnetic field, and the degree of orientation was further increased after heat treatment. However, a secondary phase that was mono manganese silicide (MnSi) was observed as a result of oxidation on the surface of synthesized powder. The electrical conductivity of the c-axis oriented specimen along the ab-plane was about 40% larger than that for sample processed only by SPS, while the Seebeck coefficient of oriented and nonoriented specimens showed similar values regardless of existence of the second phase. Consequently, the power factor of the c-axis oriented specimen along the ab-plane was enhanced by about 35% compared to the nonoriented one. The proposed approach is found to be very effective not only in obtaining the oriented materials with nonductility but also in enhancing the thermoelectricity.
We succeeded in fabricating c-axis (00l) oriented ZnO ceramics by using a rotating magnetic field and a subsequent sintering treatment. The degree of orientation in the green compact was about 0.5 along (00l) on the Lotgering scale. The degree of orientation increased to 0.99 after sintering at 1573 K. Particles can also be oriented in a static magnetic field, but along the direction of the a-axis or a,b-axes (h00), (hk0). These results show that selected axes can be oriented by controlling the magnetic field. Control of the crystal form in microstructures is expected to result in improvements in and better miniaturization of functional ceramics.
Removal of natural pore during capsule hot isostatic pressing (HIP) and normal sintering were examined directly with the novel liquid immersion technique, which can reveal details of micro-structure and characterize flaw-forming defects of microns-size in lightly densified specimens. The results were supplemented by the pore size measurement with the mercury porosimetry, microstructural examination with SEM as well as microstructural examination of specimens after final densification. The behaviors in both pore size and shape changes were different in HIP and normal sintering. Removal of large pores of microns-size started from the beginning of densification in HIP. Whereas large pores grow with densification in normal sintering. Large pores changes their shape drastically in HIP, but hardly changes in normal sintering. The behavior of pore in the early stage of densification is closely related to the microstructure of densified specimen; without HIP, large defects of processing origin are present in near-fully dense specimen. These observations were discussed in terms of current sintering theory.
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