Grain boundary phenomena in an ultrafine-grained Al-Zn alloy with improved mechanical behavior for micro-devices

Nguyen Q. Chinh, Ruslan Z. Valiev, Xavier Sauvage, Gábor Varga, Károly Havancsák, Megumi Kawasaki, Boris B. Straumal, Terence G. Langdon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

66 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The microstructural and mechanical properties of an ultrafine-grained (UFG) Al-Zn alloy processed by high-pressure torsion (HPT) are investigated using depth-sensing indentations, focused ion beam, scanning electron microscopy and scanning transmission electron microscopy. Emphasis is placed on the microstructure and the effects of grain boundaries at room temperature. The experiments show the formation of Zn-rich layers at the Al/Al grain boundaries that enhance the role of grain boundary sliding leading to unique plastic behavior in this UFG material. The occurrence of significant grain boundary sliding at room temperature is demonstrated by deforming micro-pillars. Our results illustrate a potential for using UFG materials as advanced functional materials in electronic micro-devices. High-pressure torsion is used to produce an ultrafine-grained structure in an Al-30% Zn alloy and the mechanical behavior is investigated using various techniques. We show that Zn-rich layers form at the Al/Al grain boundaries, which enhance the role of grain boundary sliding and produce stable deformation, even at the micro-scale, without the strain avalanches, which characterize micro-sized coarse-grained crystals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1000-1009
Number of pages10
JournalAdvanced Engineering Materials
Volume16
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics

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