Ultra-high temperature spark plasma sintering of α-SiC
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Ultra High Temperature SPS (UHTSPS) was used to sinter pure α-SiC at 2450 ᵒC. Such a high temperature and partial vacuum conditions promoted SiC sublimation and condensation reactions. In the presence of an electric field, materials with graded porosity could be produced by using UHTSPS. At high temperature, the condensation of the gaseous species was controlled by the polarity of the applied electric field. Preferential condensation of SiC occurred on the negative electrode (cooler surface) due to the Peltier effect associated with the n-type thermoelectric behaviour of SiC. In absence of an electric field, condensation was driven by gravity and it resulted in dense SiC monoliths.
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