Dynamic compressive and tensile strengths of spark plasma sintered alumina Academic Article uri icon


  • Fully dense submicron grain size alumina samples were manufactured from alumina nano-powder using Spark Plasma Sintering and tested in two kinds of VISAR-instrumented planar impact tests. In the first kind, samples were loaded by 1-mm tungsten impactors, accelerated to a velocity of about 1 km/s. These tests were aimed at studying the Hugoniot elastic limit (HEL) of Spark Plasma Sintering (SPS)-processed alumina and the decay, with propagation distance, of the elastic precursor wave. In the tests of the second kind, alumina samples of 3-mm thickness were loaded by 1-mm copper impactors accelerated to 100–1000 m/s. These tests were aimed at studying the dynamic tensile (spall) strength of the alumina specimens. The tensile fracture of the un-alloyed alumina shows a monotonic decline of the spall strength with the amplitude of the loading stress pulse. Analysis of the decay of the elastic precursor wave allowed determining the rate of the irreversible (inelastic) strains in the SPS-processed alumina at the initial stages of the shock-induced inelastic deformation and to clarify the mechanisms responsible for the deformation. The 1-% addition of Cr2O3 decreases the HEL of the SPS-processed alumina by 5-% and its spall strength by 50% but barely affects its static properties.

publication date

  • January 1, 2014