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Effect of a minor element with a large mixing enthalpy difference on the plasticity of amorphous alloys

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  31 January 2011

Kyou-Hyun Kim
Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Korea University, Seoul 136-701, Korea
Hwi-Jun Kim
Division for Bulk Amorphous and Nano Materials, Korea Institute of Industrial Technology, Incheon 406-130, Korea
Jae-Chul Lee*
Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Korea University, Seoul 136-701, Korea
a)Address all correspondence to this author. e-mail:
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In this study, we investigated the role of a minor alloying element in improving the plasticity of amorphous alloys. The plasticity of the amorphous alloys, Cu60−xZr30Ti10Bex, was drastically improved with increasing amount of Be and reached a maximum of 23% at Cu53Zr30Ti10Be7. It was observed that an atomistic-scale phase separation existed within the alloy, which resulted from the large difference in mixing enthalpy between the binary pairs (Be–Cu, Be–Zr). This atomistic-scale phase separation resulted in an open structure in which atomic rearrangements in the form of the creation of free volume and crystallization were facilitated during deformation. Here we discuss the origin of the enhanced plasticity by clarifying the effect of an additional element, whose mixing enthalpies with the major elements are significantly different, on the structural change of the amorphous alloy.

Copyright © Materials Research Society 2007

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