Investigation of al-b4c metal matrix composites produced by friction stir additive processing

Martin Zubcak*, Jaroslav Soltes, Mariia Zimina, Thomas Weinberger, Norbert Enzinger

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Aluminium—boron carbide metal matrix composites (Al-B4C MMCs) belong to the class of materials extensively used in the nuclear industry as a thermal neutron absorber in spent fuel casks. This article investigates a novel production method of Al-B4C MMCs—Friction Stir Additive Processing (FSAP)—as an alternative production method to casting or sintering. FSAP is derived from friction stir welding, which can be used to local modifications of microstructure, or it can be used to incorporate the second phase into the processed material. During this study, a variant of FSAP for MMC production was proposed, and its mechanical and thermal neutron absorbing properties have been investigated. Further, the influence of neutron irradiation on mechanical properties has been studied. Results show that FSAP can successfully produce Al-B4C MMCs with 7 mm thickness. Neutron irradiation causes only a slight increase in hardness, while its effect on tensile properties remains inconclusive.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2020
Number of pages11
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021


  • Aluminium
  • Boron carbide
  • FSAP
  • Radiation damage
  • Thermal neutron absorption

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Metals and Alloys

Fields of Expertise

  • Advanced Materials Science


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