Abstract

An experimental study of the spheroidization efficiency of induction plasma processes was completed. The main objective being to obtain models which could be subsequently used for the prediction of the spheroidization efficiency for various powders and plasma operating conditions. Silica, alumina, chromium oxide and zirconia powders were treated during the experimentation. For the plasma treatment of the powders the installation used had a maximum available power of 50 kW with an operating frequency of 3 MHz. Operating conditions were varied such to minimize side reactions and the evaporation of powders. The resulting powders did show the presence of cavities and a slight change in the mean diameters. The maximum energy efficiency based semi-empirical model did predict the spheroidization efficiency of the particles beyond a defined critical point known as the maximum energy efficiency point. For the model, the maximum energy efficiency is distinct for the individual powders but remain within a defined range which is reflected in the small variations in the Z constant.

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