Solute stabilization of nanocrystalline tungsten against abnormal grain growth

Olivia K. Donaldson, Khalid Hattar, Tyler Kaub, Gregory B. Thompson, Jason R. Trelewicz
2017 Journal of Materials Research  
Microstructure and phase evolution in magnetron sputtered nanocrystalline tungsten and tungsten alloy thin films are explored through in situ TEM annealing experiments at temperatures up to 1000°C. Grain growth in unalloyed nanocrystalline tungsten transpires through a discontinuous process at temperatures up to 550°C, which is coupled to an allotropic phase transformation of metastable b-tungsten with the A-15 cubic structure to stable body centered cubic (BCC) a-tungsten. Complete
more » ... omplete transformation to the BCC a-phase is accompanied by the convergence to a unimodal nanocrystalline structure at 650°C, signaling a transition to continuous grain growth. Alloy films synthesized with compositions of W-20 at.% Ti and W-15 at.% Cr exhibit only the BCC a-phase in the as-deposited state, which indicate the addition of solute stabilizes the films against the formation of metastable b-tungsten. Thermal stability of the alloy films is significantly improved over their unalloyed counterpart up to 1000°C, and grain coarsening occurs solely through a continuous growth process. The contrasting thermal stability between W-Ti and W-Cr is attributed to different grain boundary segregation states, thus demonstrating the critical role of grain boundary chemistry in the design of solute-stabilized nanocrystalline alloys. , Inc. responsible for managing technology development and transition with a focus on harsh environment sensors produced by additive manufacturing processes. Professor Trelewicz's research is on the science of interface engineered alloys with particular emphasis on high-strength and radiation-tolerant nanomaterials for extreme environment applications. His group couples in situ and analytical characterization tools with large-scale atomistic simulations to explore the thermal stability, mechanical behavior, and radiation tolerance of solute-stabilized nanocrystalline alloys, crystalline-amorphous nanolaminates, metallic glass matrix composites, and other unique hierarchical metallic structures. Professor Trelewicz is a recipient of the 2017 DOE Early Career
doi:10.1557/jmr.2017.296 fatcat:tlugbr4z5bebnlikcmyepilhue