Reduced partitioning of plastic strain for strong and yet ductile precipitate-strengthened alloys

R. D. Jones; F. Di Gioacchino; H. Lim; T. E. J. Edwards; C. Schwalbe; C. C. Battaile; W. J. Clegg

Scientific Reports 8 (2018) 8698-8698

When a material that contains precipitates is deformed, the precipitates and the matrix may strain plastically by different amounts causing stresses to build up at the precipitate-matrix interfaces. If premature failure is to be avoided, it is therefore essential to reduce the difference in the plastic strain between the two phases. Here, we conduct nanoscale digital image correlation to measure a new variable that quantifies this plastic strain difference and show how its value can be used to estimate the associated interfacial stresses, which are found to be approximately three times greater in an Fe-Ni2AlTi steel than in the more ductile Ni-based superalloy CMSX-4®. It is then demonstrated that decreasing these stresses significantly improves the ability of the Fe-Ni2AlTi microstructure to deform under tensile loads without loss in strength.