Tensile Stress and Thermal Growth Effects on Grain Boundary Motion in Nanocrystalline Nickel
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The second study examines thermal effects of various annealing temperatures on grain boundary motion in 5 nm3 periodic nc-Ni specimens. It is found that grain growth exhibits a linear relationship with time, as opposed to parabolic grain growth observed in bulk metals. During the annealing process, it is also observed that the average grain boundary energy decreases with t-1/2, as grains oriented themselves in a lower-energy configuration with their neighbors via grain rotation. An Arrhenius plot of average grain boundary velocity and energy per atom within a grain boundary displays identical slopes, and thus, identical activation energies of ~ 53 kJ for both characteristics. This can be attributed to the fact that grain boundary velocity and energy per atom are governed by the same entity, which is grain boundary diffusion. The annealed samples display a grain rotation-coalescence growth mechanism, where adjacent grains rotate concurrently, to decrease the misorientation energy of the grain boundary between them. It is observed that some grains have achieved the same orientation at the end of the growth process, indicating that the grain boundary has been annihilated, and the two grains have coalesced into a single larger grain.
- Doctoral Dissertations