Development of high speed steel sintered using concentrated solar energy Articles uri icon

publication date

  • December 2013

start page

  • 2065

end page

  • 2073


  • 12


  • 213

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0924-0136

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1873-4774


  • The steel powders were sintered under N₂-H₂ atmosphere in a solar furnace and in a Fresnel lens, after compaction of the green parts, using much higher heating and/or cooling rates as compared to conventional tubular furnace. The effects of processing parameters and the use of concentrated solar energy on densification and mechanical properties were analyzed. Experimental results demonstrated the activating effect of concentrated solar energy on the sintering process showing that an optimum densification is achieved at 1150 degrees C on both solar installations in just 90 min for the solar furnace and in 30 min in the case of Fresnel lens installation compared with an optimum temperature of 1290 degrees C in similar to 10 h of total cycle in the conventional tubular furnace. Better mechanical properties were obtained using concentrated solar energy with microhardness measurements ranging between 800 and 900 HV. Microstructural analyses by scanning and transmission electron microscopy reveal the presence of submicron sized vanadium nitrides and other nanometer sized particles in the samples that could be responsible for the high hardness values obtained.


  • solar sintering; high speed steel; microstructure