A crystal plasticity model with an atomistically informed description of grain boundary sliding for improved predictions of deformation fields

A Venkataraman and MD Sangid, COMPUTATIONAL MATERIALS SCIENCE, 197, 110589 (2021).

DOI: 10.1016/j.commatsci.2021.110589

Crystal plasticity (CP) is a powerful meso-scale technique for deformation modeling in polycrystalline materials. Crystal plasticity models typically do not include an explicit description of grain boundary (GB) sliding, which could lead to inaccurate predictions of strain distributions, especially in the vicinity of GBs. In the present study, a CP model is developed that includes GB sliding as an additional deformation mechanism and models the interaction between slip and GB sliding. Atomistic simulations are used to formulate the constitutive model for GB sliding and its interaction with incident slip. The deformation fields and structure of the GBs are obtained directly from experimental characterization and are faithfully reproduced as bicrystal systems for molecular dynamics simulations. The GBs are modeled as random-type (non-coincidence, asymmetrical) boundaries as observed from experimental data. The underlying atomistic-scale mechanism for pure sliding of random GBs was found to be analogous to fluid-flow. The interaction between incident slip and a sliding GB caused local increases in stress concentration, which further led to a momentary increase in the local sliding rate. The displacement profiles at the sliding GBs computed from the CP model with sliding accommodation are 38% more accurate than the baseline CP model as quantified by the mean squared error between the simulations and experiment. These results help improve the sophistication and accuracy of deformation modeling by including physics-based descriptions for GB sliding and its interaction with slip, eventually leading to more reliable predictions of micro mechanical quantities.

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