Document Type


Date of Degree

Fall 2018

Degree Name

PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)

Degree In

Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Beckermann, Christoph

First Committee Member

Udaykumar, H S

Second Committee Member

Carrica, Pablo M

Third Committee Member

Buchholz, James H J

Fourth Committee Member

Markfort, Corey D


Oxide inclusions are among the most commonly reported defects in ferrous and non-ferrous castings. They affect the surface quality, machinability, and mechanical performance of a cast part. Air entrainment during mold filling is the main source of the oxygen that is consumed in inclusion formation. A quantitative understanding of the formation mechanisms or the prediction of final amounts and locations of oxide inclusions in metal castings is not available. Ductile iron experiments are conducted to study the formation of oxide inclusions during pouring. Oxide inclusions are measured by serial sectioning of the solidified castings. The effect of different gating systems, section thicknesses, and surface orientations on the inclusion formation and final distribution is studied. In addition, a computational model is developed for predicting the formation, motion and final location of oxide inclusions during pouring of metal castings, with the focus on the important mechanism of generation of oxide inclusions due to air entrainment during mold filling. The developed model calculates the local air entrainment rate as a function of the turbulent kinetic energy and the magnitude of the normal velocity gradient of the liquid metal at the liquid-air interface. The turbulent kinetic energy is estimated from the sum of the squares of the fluctuating velocity components relative to a spatially averaged mean velocity. The air entrainment model is implemented in a casting simulation software and validated by comparing its predictions to experimental air entrainment measurements for a circular water jet plunging into a quiescent pool. The liquid velocity, diameter and the turbulence intensity dependence is determined by a single entrainment coefficient. Oxide inclusions are then generated at the liquid-air interface, transported with the melt flow under the combined influences of drag and buoyancy, and captured by the solidifying casting surface. The developed model provides a powerful technique for predicting the oxide inclusion formation and final location.


Air Entrainment, Casting Defects, Casting Simulation, Computational Fluid Dynamics, Free Surface Turbulence, Oxide Inclusions


xvii, 118 pages


Includes bibliographical references (pages 114-118).


Copyright © 2018 Seyyed Hojjat Majidi