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Numerical Investigation of Shape-Memory Zirconia-Reinforced Metal-Matrix Composite for Energy Dissipation and High Temperature Applications



This paper aims to exploit the shape-memory behavior of zirconia in order to design a composite with enhanced strength, energy dissipation, and strain recovery upon heating. Zirconia is characterized by two properties: superelasticity and the shapememory effect. These unique features are achieved through the reversible phase transformation from a high-temperature tetragonal phase to a low-temperature monoclinic phase. This study examines the response of shape-memory zirconia-reinforced aluminum-matrix composite under mechanical and thermal loadings. Microstructural finite element simulations are conducted to investigate the impact of the yield stress of the matrix, as well as the volume fraction and the diameter of zirconia particles on the response of the composite. The results of this study show that shape-memory zirconia reinforcing particles contributed effectively to the strength enhancement. In fact, it is found that 50% zirconia volume fraction can improve the maximum stress and the energy dissipation by 76% and 38%, respectively, at 4% tensile strain. Furthermore, 23% recoverable strain can be achieved upon heating up to 700â—¦K. This work provides insights into the potential application of shape-memory zirconia as reinforcing particles for damping systems and high temperature actuation.


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