Published online by Cambridge University Press: 06 July 2020
Improved plasticity models require simultaneous experimental local strain and microstructural evolution data. Microscopy tools, such as electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD), that can monitor transformation at the relevant length-scale, are often incompatible with digital image correlation (DIC) techniques required to determine local deformation. In this paper, the viability of forescatter detector (FSD) images as the basis for the DIC study is investigated. Standard FSD and an integrated EBSD/FSD approach (Pattern Region of Interest Analysis System: PRIAS™) are analyzed. Simultaneous strain and microstructure maps are obtained for tensile deformation of Q&P 1180 steel up to ~14% strain. Tests on an undeformed sample that is simply shifted indicate a standard deviation of error in strain of around 0.4% without additional complications from a deformed surface. The method resolves strain bands at ~2 μm spacing but does not provide significant sub-grain strain resolution. Similar resolution was obtained for mechanically polished and electropolished samples, despite electropolished surfaces presenting a smoother, simpler topography. While the resolution of the PRIAS approach depends upon the EBSD step size, the 80 nm step size used provides seemingly similar resolution as 8,000× (22.7 nm) FSD images. Surface feature evolution prevents DIC analysis across large strain steps (>6% strain), but restarting DIC, using an FSD reference image from an interim strain step, allows reasonable DIC across the stress–strain curve. Furthermore, the data are obtained easily and provide complementary information for EBSD analysis.