Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 29, Issue 14, pp 3577–3590 | Cite as

Abnormal grain growth in alumina-doped hafnia ceramics

  • J. Wang
  • C. B. Ponton
  • P. M. Marquis


Hafnia (HfO2) ceramics containing 0.0, 5.0, and 10.0 vol% Al2O3, respectively, were sintered at 1600°C for various periods from 2–24 h. Abnormal grain growth was found to occur in the Al2O3-containing compositions. Hafnia containing 5.0 vol% Al2O3 exhibits an average grain size of almost double that of the Al2O3-free hafnia matrix, coupled with a much wider grain-size distribution. The material containing 10.0 vol% Al2O3 shows a smaller average grain size than the composition containing 5.0 vol% Al2O3. However, its average grain size is still larger than that of the Al2O3-free hafnia on sintering at 1600°C for more than 8 h. Microstructural characterization, carried out using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) equipped with an energy dispersive analysis facility (EDX), indicated that there existed a continuous segregant layer at the grain boundaries and grain junctions in the Al2O3-free hafnia. Hafnia exhibits a low solubility in the segregant layer phase which inhibits the growth of the hafnia grains. The Al2O3 particles act as a scavenger for the silicon-rich glassy phase, damaging the continuous nature of the boundary segregant layer and promoting grain growth in the Al2O3-doped hafnia ceramics. The microstructural development at the sintering temperature is an overall result of the concurrent scavenger effect and grain pinning by the Al2O3 particles.


Grain Size Transmission Electron Microscopy Al2O3 Sinter Temperature Microstructural Development 
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Copyright information

© Chapman & Hall 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Wang
    • 1
  • C. B. Ponton
    • 1
  • P. M. Marquis
    • 1
  1. 1.IRC in Materials for High Performance Applications and School of Metallurgy and Materials and School of DentistryThe University of BirminghamBirminghamUK

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