Magnesium master alloys are being used in a broad variety of structural applications in the automotive, aerospace, electronics and consumer products industries. The rare earth metals (RE) are well-known as effective alloying elements for magnesium alloys, especially in creep resistance up to high temperatures. There are a few kinds of rare earth magnesium alloys, for example, AE42, AE41, WE43, WE54, etc. It is very difficult to directly from the special magnesium alloy contained rare earth because there is a large difference between magnesium (1.78g/cm3 ) and rare earth ( ~ 7.8g/cm3 ) in density. Also, it is very difficult to alloy because their molten point is very different, which magnesium is about 650o C and rare earth are above 1100o C. Because of the lack of rare earth magnesium alloys their application in high temperature, creep resistance, high strength and corrosion resistance is deeply limited. Lanthanide has 16 elements including Y and Sc. A specific feature of the rare earth metals is a significant difference between them as they are added to magnesium.
The magnesium alloys contained neodymium, for instance, show a higher strengthening effect than that contained cerium. And yttrium shows a higher strengthening effect and creep resistance effect than neodymium in magnesium alloys. The strength properties of Mg alloys with rare earth metals are connected to a great extent with the content of RE in magnesium, especially, the solubility of the rare earth metals in solid Mg. Therefore, the success in developing a series of rare earth magnesium master-alloys will be very important for the wide application of magnesium alloys.
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