Direct crystallization of the peritectic Nd[sub 2]Fe[sub 14]B[sub 1] phase by undercooling of bulk alloy melts

Volkmann, Thomas; Gao, Jianrong; Herlach, Dieter M.
March 2002
Applied Physics Letters;3/18/2002, Vol. 80 Issue 11, p1915
Academic Journal
Electromagnetic levitation was used to melt and solidify containerlessly Nd-Fe-B alloys. A method was developed to reduce and evaporate stable solid Nd oxides at the surface of the liquid samples. The oxides otherwise limit the undercoolability of the highly reactive Nd-based alloys. In such a way, undercoolings up to 150 K of the levitation processed samples were achieved. Owing to the large undercooling range, the intermetallic Nd[sub 2]Fe[sub 14]B[sub 1] phase with the hard magnetic properties was primarily crystallized at undercoolings exceeding 50 K. Solidification of the pro-peritectic γ-Fe with soft magnetic properties was successfully suppressed. At the largest undercoolings, a metastable phase, likely to be of the composition Nd[sub 2]Fe[sub 17]B[sub x] (x≈l) is primarily formed while the crystallization of Nd[sub 2]Fe[sub l4]B[sub 1] phase is followed up in a subsequent step.


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