2009 Volume 49 Issue 7 Pages 985-991
Solid or molten oxides are considered to act as nucleation sites during continuous steel casting. The influence of the kind of oxide crystal and atmospheric oxygen partial pressure on the degree of undercooling and contact angle of pure molten iron on oxide substrates was measured by the sessile drop method. On Al2O3 and MgAl2O4 substrates, we found that the change in the degree of undercooling was dependent on the existence of a reaction layer and its thickness. On an MgO substrate, since no reaction layer formed, the degree of undercooling was small and was governed by the lattice misfit parameter. The equilibrium contact angle of a molten iron drop on the FeAl2O4 layer formed between the Al2O3 substrate and drop was about 100°; a similar contact angle was obtained on MgAl2O4. The contact angle on MgO changed during observation due to the evaporation of Mg.