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Fabrication of silicon nitride nanoceramics—Powder preparation and sintering: A review

Author(s): Toshiyuki Nishimura et al

Journal: Science and Technology of Advanced Materials
ISSN 1468-6996

Volume: 8;
Issue: 7-8;
Start page: 635;
Date: 2007;
Original page

Fine-grained silicon nitride ceramics were investigated mainly for their high-strain-rate plasticity. The preparation and densification of fine silicon nitride powder were reviewed. Commercial sub-micrometer powder was used as raw powder in the "as-received" state and then used after being ground and undergoing classification operation. Chemical vapor deposition and plasma processes were used for fabricating nanopowder because a further reduction in grain size caused by grinding had limitations. More recently, nanopowder has also been obtained by high-energy milling. This process in principle is the same as conventional planetary milling. For densification, primarily hot pressing was performed, although a similar process known as spark plasma sintering (SPS) has also recently been used. One of the advantages of SPS is its high heating rate. The high heating rate is advantageous because it reduces sintering time, achieving densification without grain growth. We prepared silicon nitride nanopowder by high-energy milling and then obtained nanoceramics by densifying the nanopowder by SPS.
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