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Interface Energy of Metal-Ceramic Interface Co/WC Using ab initio Thermodynamics

In many metal-ceramic composites the interface between the metallic and ceramic phases determines the mechanical properties of the material. A prominent example is the WC-Co composite, where the combination of high WC hardness and Co ductility results in advantageous mechanical properties for applications in the tool manufacturing industry. The outstanding performance of WC-Co can be explained by the low interface energies (high stability) of the contacting surfaces of WC and Co.

Interface Energy of Metal-Ceramic Interface Co/WC Using ab initio  Thermodynamics

The present application note describes how to build a Co/WC interface and how to perform a computational study of the interface energy.

  • Search for interfaces using the MEDEA interface builder
  • Set up computational procedures to calculate the interface energy
  • Handle non-stoichiometry: The Co/WC interface built in the present application example has a differing number of C and W atoms and therefore requires the so-called “Ab Initio Thermodynamics” formalism to determine the interface energy.