In this work, a novel process, oscillatory pressure-assisted sinter forging (OPSF), for the preparation of high-performance ceramic composites was reported. Compared with the samples made by conventional sinter forging (SF) and hot oscillatory pressing (HOP), the SiC whisker reinforced Al2O3 composites (SiCw–Al2O3) prepared by OPSF at the same temperature exhibited a higher density and significantly improved the mechanical properties. The improvements in densification and performance are attributed to simultaneous enhanced shear deformation at both macro- and micro-scales, resulting from the combination of die-free configuration and oscillatory pressure of OPSF. And the strength of grain boundary is greatly increased when the temperature reaches 1600 ℃ of OPSF, due to that the grain-boundary sliding became pronounced at higher temperatures. The current results shed light on a powerful technique for preparing ceramic composites, which is likely applicable to other systems.
The authors thank the financial support from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 52072344 and U1904180), Excellent Young Scientists Fund of Henan Province (Grant No. 202300410369), and Henan Province University Innovation Talents Support Program (Grant No. 21HASTIT001).
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