In-situ observation of the nucleation kinetics and the mechanism of grain refinement in Al–Si alloys

Masoumeh Faraji, Jonathan Wright, Laurence Katgerman

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13 Citations (Scopus)


The nucleation behavior of primary aluminium phase in a hypoeutectic Al–Si foundry alloy is studied using the 3DXRD microscope during the liquid–solid phase transformation for continuous cooling. Grain nucleation and grain growth for few different casting conditions of a commercial aluminium alloy (A356: Al-7Si-0.4 Mg-0.1Fe-0.1Ti wt.%) were investigated using three dimensional X-ray diffraction microscope (3DXRD) located at ID11 at European Synchrotron Radiation Facility ( To conduct the study a monochromatic hard X-ray beam (energy of 70 keV) with a beam size of 200×200 µm2 was used and using a special furnace the microstructure evolution during solidification of a commercial Al–Si foundry alloy (A356) was monitored in-situ. Results gathered from solid fraction information showed adding 0.1 wt.% Ti (as Al-3Ti-B) changes the primary aluminium nucleation temperature and aluminium grain size. Furthermore, it showed that at slower cooling rate (0.04–0.1 K/s) grain refiner can alter the primary aluminium nucleation temperature by 20 °C, whereas at higher rates (2 K/s) this figure was reduced down to 5 °C.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1016-1018
Number of pages3
JournalMaterials Letters
Issue number9
Early online date15 Jan 2010
Publication statusPublished - 15 May 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Al–Si hypoeutectic alloy
  • Solidification kinetics
  • X–ray diffraction
  • Synchrotron radiation


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