According to different performances, ceramic materials can be divided into common ceramics and special ceramics. Common ceramic is a kind of ceramic material that is produced by sintering clay with traditional methods, which usually has high brittleness and is fragile. Special ceramic is a kind of ceramic material that is made by using artificial compounds as raw materials, such as oxide, nitride, carbide, boride and so on.
Special ceramic also can be called cermet, which is a kind of ceramic material that is made by metal powder metallurgy technology. It has high strength, high hardness, good corrosion resistance and high temperature resistance. After toughening processing, this kind of ceramic will have good tenacity and can be widely used no matter in traditional industry or in emerging high-tech industry.
However, as special ceramic material has high hardness and high strength, it will be difficult to process and mold. Therefore, metal powder metallurgy could be a kind of workable method. By adding a certain amount of metal elements in ceramic material, it can be made into cermet. Among them, cemented carbide is a kind of important cermet. Besides, it can be regarded as an advanced technology by spraying coating on the surface of cemented carbide products.
This technology can improve the wear resistance and tenacity of cemented carbide products, however, due to the limitation of equipment, technology and coating composition, it still faces many problems. In the future, with the improvement of equipment and technology and the development of new coating materials, it will certainly have more and more important effect.
In order to meet higher and higher market requirement, the quantity of cemented carbide should be continuously improved and new product variety should be developed. In order to meet the demand, new metal powder metallurgy technology has been continuously developed, such as high temperature self-propagating synthesis technology, plasma powder production technology, fluidized bed granulation technology, plasma sintering technology and various new type physical and chemical hardening technologies.
Ti(C,N)-based cermet that is produced by metal powder metallurgy will have good high-temperature resistance and wear resistance as well as good tenacity and strength; besides, the ultrafine cemented carbide that produced by this technology can also be made into compact material by adding the inhibitor that can inhibit the grain growth so as to refine the grains.
In addition, cermet metal powder metallurgy can also be used in producing functionally graded cemented carbide, cemented carbide that has special hard phase and cemented carbide heat treating. Due to the advanced technology and low cost of powder metallurgy, the whole performance of cermet can be rapidly improved in a short time. As new type near net shape technology has become mature gradually, metal powder metallurgy will continuously be used in material science, metallurgy science and components manufacturing field.
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