Molybdenum Disilicide Composites Produced by Plasma Spraying

R.G. CastroA.H. Bartlett

Abstract

The intermetallic compound, molybdenum disilicide (MoSi2) is being considered for high temperature structural applications because of its high melting point and superior oxidation resistance at elevated temperatures. The lack of high temperature strength, creep resistance and low temperature ductility has hindered its progress for structural applications. Plasma spraying of coatings and structural components of MoSi2-based composites offers an exciting processing alternative to conventional powder processing methods due to superior flexibility and the ability to tailor properties. Laminate, discontinuous and in situ reinforced composites have been produced with secondary reinforcements of Ta, A1203, SiC, Si3N4 and Mo5Si3. Laminate composites, in particular, have been shown to improve the damage tolerance of MoSi2 during high temperature melting operations. A review of research which as been performed at Los Alamos National Laboratory on plasma spraying of MoSi2-based composites to improve low temperature fracture toughness, thermal shock resistance, high temperature strength and creep resistance will be discussed.

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