Nanotwinning and tensile behavior in cold-welded high-entropy-alloy nanowires

Y Cui and Y Toku and Y Ju, NANOTECHNOLOGY, 32, 315716 (2021).

DOI: 10.1088/1361-6528/abf7eb

Since the fabrication technique for high-entropy alloy (HEA) nanowires/nanopillars is still in its infancy, neither experimental nor modeling analyses of their cold-welding performance have been reported. Based on insights accumulated in our previous experiments and simulations regarding cold-welded metallic nanowires, in this study, the cold-welding performance of HEA nanowires is probed by atomistic simulations. Among different materials, our simulations reveal that extensively twinned structures are formed in CoCrMnFeNi samples, but not in CoCrCuFeNi or Ni samples. The larger fracture strain in certain HEAs is due to the improved ductility around the fracturing area as well as multiple twinning. Unlike in Ni samples, the fracture strains in HEA samples, regardless of being cuboid or cylindrical, are improved by shrinking the sample size. Among different orientations, the 010-direction monocrystalline nanowires fail at a strain over 0.6, which is almost double that of the 111 direction. The fracture strains in polycrystalline HEA samples are, on average, larger than those in polycrystalline Ni samples. Furthermore, fracture strains in randomly generated polycrystalline HEA samples are more predictable than those in polycrystalline Ni samples with identical grain configurations. As previously reported, dislocation emission is still a prerequisite to fracture in all cold-welded samples.

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