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MAGNESIUM-ALLOY ENGINE CYLINDER BLOCK

Erdem GUNES

ABSTRACT: In addition to the CFC gases, nitrogen oxide, water vapor, sulfur dioxide and other gases has also great effects on the ozone layer depletion. It states in the European Union Commission Report which was published in 1998 concerning the emissions of CO2 from cars, the target is to reduce CO2 emissions in 2003 to 165-170 g / km, in 2008 to 140 g / km and in 2012 to 120 g / km of CO2. Less harmful gas emissions means less fuel consumption, less fuel consumption means lower weight and the lower weight means a lighter metal is to use. Today, magnesium is the lightest metal in metallic materials that are used as construction materials. Between the materials that used in the automotive industry, magnesium is lighter and has sufficient strength compared to aluminum and steel. In this study, engine cylinder block with magnesium alloy is examined under the automobile engine operating conditions and advantages compared to other materials are discussed. INTRODUCTION: Air pollution is the main problem that we have to achieve now and in the future and the automobiles are one of the main reasons that causes air pollution nowadays. It was stated in EU Environmental Reports that ozone layer depletion was at its maximum level in 1994 and according to the Montral protocol, the use of gases which have harmful effects on ozone layer were forbidden. Moreover, in European Union, it was aimed to reduce the CO2 emission from cars. It is now mandatory to produce the cars with new technologies that limit the release of major amount of harmful waste into the atmosphere. Low gas emissions, in other words means lower fuel consumption. For the 21st century, in the European Union countries, the fuel consumption 3 l / 100 km stands before us as an important point that should be achieved.[1] For many years in automotive industry many hard works are done in order to ensure the fuel economy. Reducing the friction of tires on vehicles, increasing the efficiency of the engine and transmission, reducing the cars frontal area, vehicle weight reduction are the main topics that are approached for this reason. For example, reducing the cars weight up to 50 kg provides a fuel economy of 80 to 200 meters per liter.[2] The easiest way to reduce the weight of the vehicle is to use lighter materials.[3] Today, magnesium is the lightest metal in metallic materials that are used as construction materials. Not only it is like plastic materials in terms of its density and evaporation characteristics but also it also has required features as mechanical properties like other metals. Besides, it also offer significant advantages compared to aluminum in terms of machinability. [2-3] All those researches show that, in the future magnesium will be the High-Tech Metal of the industry and most importantly will be take place in automobile industry.[4-5] THEORY: Engine Cylinder Block The block is the basic part of the engine and other parts that compose the engine is connected to the engine block. In general, cast iron or aluminum alloys used as the material.. There are many holes on the engine block. The major ones are cylinders.[6] Parts of the Engine Block The main parts in the engine cylinder block and the functions are listed below. Pistons The purpose of the pistons which are moving up and down in the cylinders is to compress the fuel in the cylinder, transmit the mechanical energy produced as a result of explosion and to dispose the waste gas outside the cylinder. [6]

Crankshaft At the bottom of cylinders, the pistons are subjected to crankshaft, which is located in horizontal position. As it rotates its around, pistons move up and down. [6] Cylinder Head The main parts that subjected to cylinder head are camshaft and valves. [6] Valves They provide to enter the fuel into cylinder and waste gas to out. [6] Camshaft According to the movement of the piston within the cylinder, camshaft controls the opening and closing of valves. Synchronously is in motion with the crankshaft. [6] Events Happening During the Movement of the car In gasoline engines, mixed fuel and air in carburetor transmitted to combustion chamber. Explosion occurs here with firing the mixture by the spark plug.[8]. In diesel engines, the situation is different. Only air fills in cylinder. Air is highly compressed by the piston. The compression ratio is higher than gasoline engines. Compressed air reaches a temperature of such as 500 degrees Celsius under high pressure. At this time, with fuel injection into the cylinder explosion occurs. As a result, instead of spark plugs there are fuel injectors in diesel engines. An also, they do not need the carburetors. [7]. Desired Properties for Engine Cylinder Block The most important mechanical properties that have to be taken into account are, tensile strength, distortion strength, ductility (% elongation), hardness, fatigue resistance [7]. As the properties of the alloy used is important for the mechanical performance, the actual performance may vary with the thickness, porosity and even though the actual performance of this piece of material thickness, porosity and design of the piece[7]. Alloys Used in Engine Block Cast-Iron Alloys As they were the firstly used alloys in engine cylinder block, because of their heavy weight, aluminum alloys took their place in production. Since the last 20 years, although the aluminum alloys are mostly preferred, cast iron is still being used in industry. Aluminum Alloys Not only to make the car light in weight but also provide gas emission reduction and fuel efficiency improvement, increasing safety and driving performance, aluminum has lots of advantages to be used in automobile industry. Moreover, its low-cost, castability, machinability and resistance to high temperatures properties make it advantageous. Silicon is very suitable for alloying because of it has low price, appropriate for casting, it lowers the melting point, increases fluidity of liquid metal and also it reduces shrinkage during solidification.[8] Common used aluminum alloys are AA 319, AA-320, AlSi5Cu3 and AlSi6Cu4(A23).[8] Magnesium Alloys After the second world war, magnesium has been used in the automotive industry. Lower price of aluminum than magnesium block the use of magnesium in industry. In the last ten years, Magnesium was used in industry as composite material alloyed with Aluminum.[9]

Comparison of Magnesium, Aluminum and Stell [9] Al Atomic Number Atom weight Melting Point Boiling Point Density Elasticity modulus Brinell Hardness Thermal Conductivity Electrical Resistance Structure Magnesium There are three basic sources of magnesium: seawater, minerals and asbestos. Its especially used for; 13 27 933,5 K 2792 K 2,7g/cm3 70 Gpa 245 MN/m2 235 W/Mk 2,65 mW. Cm BCC Mg 12 24 923 K 1363 K 1,7g/cm3 45 GPa 260 MN/m2 160 W/mK 4,4 mW. cm Hexagonal Fe 26 56 1811 K 3134 K 7,9g/cm3 211 GPa 490 MN/m2 80 W/mK 9,7 mW. cm BCC

Aluminum alloying Grey cast iron Desulphurization Metal Reduction Electro-chemical applications Chemical applications Graphite cast iron High-pressure casting Wrought products and other application[10]

Magnesium Alloys Magnesium alloys have a significant amount of strain endurance. Magnesium-aluminum or magnesium-copper alloys are used where lightness is important It is available to use in many areas. They have tensile strength of 160-300 N/mm2, yield strength of 80-190 N/mm2, with a tensile elongation 0.2% and 2-15%. These alloys are used in land vehicles, electronics, computers and sports equipment industries. Specific alloy groups are magnesium-aluminum alloys, magnesium-zinc and magnesium-rare territorial metal alloys. Pure magnesium alloy AZ91 has better corrosion resistance than conventional aluminum alloys. AZ-series alloys are used in automobiles, aerospace industry, computers and mobile phones. Because of their toughness and high-energy absorption characteristics, they are used in tires, car seats structures. AE42 alloys, AS alloy series and ZC63 are used as transmission equipment at conditions higher than 200C and in engines. A new magnesium alloy WE43 shows great corrosion resistance in conditions that are above 300C. This alloy is used in air and marine vessels engines as transmission equipments and in

racecars. Instead of plastics and other similar materials, super lightweight Mg - Li- alloys are used in computer components.[11]

Basic Material Properties of Magnesium Alloys High rate of forming ability and impact resistance, very good corrosion resistance in pure alloys, High casting speeds, longer tool life in machining process and very good workability, Environmental friendly. Recyclable. Is an alternative to plastic materials in thermoplastic properties.[4]. Importance of the Use of Magnesium in Automotive Low weight, is the most important feature of magnesium. When compared with other materials which are in the same volume, its weight is 23% of steel and 64% of aluminum. It is able to compare its density with engineering plastics and also it has positive features due to the its recyclablity.[12]. Magnesium Alloy Applications in Today's Automotive Industry As well as their light weight, with their improved corrosion behavior, high toughness and good casting property of very large, but thin-walled pieces, their area of use in automobile and electronics industry has increased. Because of high speed production of magnesium alloys, machinability, recyclability, their importance is increasing day by day.[13] Daimler-Chrysler, BMW, Audi and Volkswagen are the firms that leads using of magnesium in automobile components. Parameters to be Considered in an Engine Cylinder Block Creep Creep is the elongation of the material happens in time at a certain constant temperature and under a constant load. Creep is micro size event that happens with existing crack propagation and rupture of. Therefore, creep has to be prevented in microstructure. Procedures to be applied in microstructure to improve resistance to creep are alloying for leading the precipitation in grain boundaries or optimization of grain sizes[27]. Grain size can be adjusted by adding zirconium in magnesium as alloying element[9]. The addition of rare territorial elements into magnesium provides forming intermetallic phases at grain boundaries, which can slow down as well as increases strength. Corrosion Corrosion is the disintegration of an engineered material into its constituent atoms due to chemical reactions with its surroundings. The materials used in the engine block are in contact with air, oil and fuel. Corrosion properties of the material are extremely important. Galvanic corrosion is the most important parameter that should be taken into account in an engine block. Fatigue In components, which are exposed to repeated and variable loads and vibrations such as engine block, even the tensions are smaller than the materials yield strength, usually after a certain number of vibrations, a crack occurs on the surface and fracture occurs with the propagation of the crack. This phenomenon is called fatigue. Recycling Just as important as light weight, recyclability is a factor in material selection to protect world energy and material resources.

DISCUSSION: Specifications of Magnesium Alloy, Which Was Produced by Sand Casting Method [14] 298 K 120 423 K 110 450 K 110 90

Stress equals % 0,2 elongation (MPa) Creep resistance * (MPa)

Fatigue limit ** (MPa)

50

Thermal conductivity (W/K-m) 115 *Stress equals to 0,1 % creep elongation in 100 hours ** R = -1, n = 5107 cycle Alloy Selection 3-cylinder diesel engine cylinder block, which was developed by Cooperative Research Centre for Cast Metals Manufacturing (CAST) is lighter 33% than aluminum, 75% than cast iron engines. With the results of tensile and compression tests, creep tests, fatigue tests and corrosion tests, alloy AMC-SC1, which was produced by sand casting method, provides the specifications that required by engine block. [14].

Engine Cylinder Block with AMC-SC1 Magnesium Alloy [14].

Temperature Yield Strength (C) (%0.2 offset) (MPa) 20 100 150 177 1304 1249 1283

Ultimate Tensile Strength(MPa) 2069 18411 1907

(%)Elongation 3.70.4 5.22.2 11.02.3

1147 1815 10.52.3 Mechanical Properties of AMC-SC1 Magnesium Alloy

Microstructure: When looking at the T6 heat-treated AMC - SC1 alloys microstructure, it is possible to see the -MG phase and Mg-Rare territorial intermetallic phases which was located at the grain boundaries. Strength increases with this intermetallic phases which formed at grain boundaries.[14].

Microstructure of AMC-SC1 [14] Creep test: Microstructure of T6 heat-treated AMC-AC1 alloy is very stable at operating conditions that the estimated temperature of 150 C and with intermetallic phases within the grain boundaries it shows excellent creep resistance. Fatigue characteristics: Due to the forces resulting from the up and down movement of the pistons, engine block is exposed to stress cycle. The results achieved from the tests which was made by the alloy AMC SC1 are much higher than the values required. [14]. 298 K 75 18 MPa, 393K 71 7 MPa (R = - 1,107 cycles) Corrosion: Referring to the results of tests, the values of corrosion resistance of AMC-SC1 alloy is much higher that required in an engine block [14]. To measure the resistance against to external factors (humidity, salt, dirt, etc..) ASTM-standard salt spray test was performed to AMC-SC1 alloy. According to this test, AM-SC1 alloy corrosion resistance is much higher than the AZ91D magnesium alloy which has the highest corrosion resistance[14]. CONCLUSION: In today's automobile industry, the lightness of the parts used in vehicles stands in the foreground. In parallel, with lightening the heaviest part of the car with the engine block by using an appropriate magnesium alloy, we observe: lighter engine block compared to Aluminum engine block by 30-33% and cast iron by 75% engine block, Decrease in fuel consumption, Prevent environmental damages, Ensure maximum recycling. Only limited amounts of fuel savings and reduction of polluting gases is possible with these gains. In order to gain larger amounts, it is required to use lightweight metal alloys for all of the parts of automobiles. This requirement indicates that in the future magnesium alloys will be used much more in automobile industry.

REFERENCES: [1] Wells, P. & Nieuwenhuis, P. 1998. Automotive Materials: The Challenge of Globalization and Technological Chance, Persians Professional Limited, London [2] Davis, J. 1991. The Potential for Vehicle Weight Reduction Using Magnesium. SAE Technical Paper Series, Detroit. [3] Decker, R. F., 1998. The Renaissance in Magnesium. In Advanced Materials and Processes, pp.31-33, [4] Barnes, L.T, 1994. Rolled Magnesium Products. in49th. Annual World Conference Magnesium. Chicago [5] International Magnesium Association, 1993. A global view of Magnesium: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow. Washington, D.C [6] Ofria, C., 2005. A Short Course on Automobile Engines, http://www.familycar.com/engine.htm [7] http://www.soylenasil.com/makine/dizelmotor1.htm [8] Cornell, R. and Bhadeshia, H., 1999. Aluminium-Silicon Casting Alloys. http://www.msm.cam.ac.uk/phasetrans/abstracts/M7-8.html [9] John, D., Light Materials: Automotive Applications for Light Metals. http://www.greenfleet.com.au [10] Neite, G., Kubato, K., Higashi, K. & Hehmann, F., Magnesium-Based Alloys.inMaterials Science and Technology. ASM. Ohio. [11] http://encarta.msn.com/artcenter_/browse.html [12] Kazdal Zeytin, H., 1999. Magnezyum Alamlar: Otomotiv Endstrisinde Uygulamas ve Gelecei, TBTAK MAM, Kocaeli. [13] Busk, R.S., 1987. Magnesium products design, Marcel Dekker, New York [14] Bettles, C. J., et al. 2003. AMC-SC1: an elevated temperature magnesim alloy suitable for precision sand casting of powertrain components. In Howard I. Kaplan (Ed.) Magnesium technology 2003. Pennsylvania: TMS.