Gradient microstructure induced shear band constraint, delocalization, and delayed failure in CuZr nanoglasses

SY Yuan and PS Branicio, INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PLASTICITY, 134, 102845 (2020).

DOI: 10.1016/j.ijplas.2020.102845

The mechanical properties of metallic glasses (MGs) can be significantly tuned by introducing a nanoscale glass-glass interface microstructure. Here, we design three types of Cu64Zr36 MG seamless gradient microstructures by combining glassy grain sizes from 3 to 15 nm. We perform tensile loading molecular dynamics simulations on the named gradient nanoglasses (GNGs) to characterize their mechanical behavior. In all cases, results indicate the generation of gradient plasticity following the gradient in grain size, i.e. local plasticity increases from large to small grain size regions. Loading parallel to the gradient direction results in initial broad necking followed by catastrophic failure. In contrast, loading perpendicular to the gradient direction results in diffused shear band propagation from large to small grain size regions, delaying the generation of a dominant shear band and further delocalizing plastic deformation. The results demonstrate the synergistic effects generated by heterogeneous gradient designs in the mechanical behavior of MGs.

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