Skip to main content Accessibility help

Variable Resolution Fluctuation Electron Microscopy on Cu-Zr Metallic Glass Using a Wide Range of Coherent STEM Probe Size

  • Jinwoo Hwang (a1) and P.M. Voyles (a1)


We report variable resolution fluctuation electron microscopy (VRFEM) measurements on Cu64.5Zr35.5 metallic glass acquired using scanning transmission electron microscopy nanodiffraction using coherent probes 0.8 to 11 nm in diameter. The VRFEM results show that medium range atomic order structure of Cu64.5Zr35.5 bulk metallic glass at the ∼1 nm scale has large fluctuations, but the structure becomes almost completely homogeneous at the 11 nm scale. We show that our experimental VRFEM data are consistent with two different models, the pair persistent model and the amorphous/nanocrystal composite model. We also report a new way to filter VRFEM data to eliminate the effect of specimen thickness gradient using high-angle annular dark field images as references.


Corresponding author

Corresponding author. E-mail:


Hide All
Argon, A.S. (1979). Plastic deformation in metallic glasses. Acta Metall 27, 4758.
Bogle, S.N., Nittala, L.N., Tweston, R.D., Voyles, P.M. & Abelson, J.R. (2010). Size analysis of nanoscale order in amorphous materials by variable-resolution fluctuation electron microscopy. Ultramicroscopy 110(10), 12731278.
Fan, L., Paterson, D., McNulty, I., Treacy, M.M.J. & Gibson, J.M. (2007). Fluctuation X-ray microscopy: A novel approach for the structural study of disordered materials. J Microscopy 225(1), 4148.
Fischer, H.E., Barnes, A.C. & Salmon, P.S. (2006). Neutron and X-ray diffraction studies of liquids and glasses. Rep Prog Phys 69, 233299.
Freeman, L.A., Howie, A., Mistry, A.B. & Gaskell, P.H. (1976). Studies of the structure of silicate glasses and amorphous elemental semiconductors by high resolution electron microscopy. In The Structure of Non-Crystalline Materials, Gaskell, P.H. (Ed.), pp. 245251. London: Taylor and Francis.
Gibson, J.M., Treacy, M.M.J. & Voyles, P.M. (2000). Atom pair persistence in disordered materials from fluctuation microscopy. Ultramicroscopy 83, 169178.
Greer, A.L. (2009). Metallic glasses on the threshold. Mater Today 12(1-2), 1422.
Hwang, J., Cao, J. & Voyles, P.M. (2008). Nanometer-scale structural relaxation in Zr-based bulk metallic glass. Mater Res Soc Symp Proc 1048, Z05-04.
Hwang, J., Clausen, A.M., Cao, H. & Voyles, P.M. (2009). Reverse Monte Carlo structural model for a zirconium-based metallic glass incorporating fluctuation microscopy medium-range order data. J Mater Res 24(10), 31213129.
Hÿtch, M.J. & Chevalier, J.P. (1995). On the breakdown of Friedel's Law for coherent microdiffraction from amorphous materials. Ultramicroscopy 58, 114121.
Lee, B.S., Burr, G.W., Shelby, R.M., Raoux, S., Rettner, C.T., Bogle, S.N., Darmawikarta, K., Bishop, S.G. & Abelson, J.R. (2009). Observation of the role of subcritical nuclei in crystallization of a glassy solid. Science 326, 980984.
Loane, R.F., Kirkland, E.J. & Silcox, J. (1988). Visibility of single heavy atoms on thin crystalline silicon in simulated annular dark-field STEM images. Acta Cryst A 44, 912927.
Ma, D., Stoica, A.D., Wang, X-L., Lu, Z.P., Xu, M. & Kramer, M. (2009). Efficient local atomic packing in metallic glasses and its correlation with glass-forming ability. Phys Rev B 80, 014202.
Pedersen, U.R., Schrøder, T.B., Dyre, J.C. & Harrowell, P. (2010). Geometry of slow structural fluctuations in a supercooled binary alloy. Phys Rev Lett 104, 105701.
Rehr, J.J. & Albers, R.C. (2000). Theoretical approaches to X-ray absorption fine structure. Rev Mod Phys 72(3), 621654.
Rodenburg, J.M. (1988). Properties of electron microdiffraction patterns from amorphous materials. Ultramicroscopy 25, 329344.
Rodenburg, J.M. & Rauf, I.A. (1989). A cross-correlation measure of order in “amorphous” indium oxide. Inst Phys Conf Ser 98(5), 119122.
Sheng, H.W., Luo, W.K., Alamgir, F.M., Mai, J.M. & Ma, E. (2006). Atomic packing and short-to-medium-range order in metallic glasses. Nature 439(26), 419425.
Stratton, W.G., Hamann, J., Perepezko, J.H., Mao, X., Khare, S.V. & Voyles, P.M. (2005). Aluminum nanoscale order in amorphous Al92Sm8 measured by fluctuation electron microscopy. Appl Phys Lett 86, 141910.
Stratton, W.G. & Voyles, P.M. (2007). Comparison of fluctuations electron microscopy theories and experimental methods. J Phys Cond Mat 19, 455203.
Stratton, W.G. & Voyles, P.M. (2008). A phenomenological model of fluctuation electron microscopy for a nanocrystal/amorphous composite. Ultramicroscopy 108, 727736.
Tanaka, H., Kawasaki, T., Shintani, H. & Watanabe, K. (2010). Critical-like behaviour of glass-forming liquids. Nat Mater 9, 324331.
Treacy, M.M.J., Gibson, J.M., Fan, L., Paterson, D.J. & McNulty, I. (2005). Fluctuation microscopy: A probe of medium range order. Rep Prog Phys 68, 28992944.
Voyles, P.M. (2001). Fluctuation electron microscopy of medium-range order in amorphous silicon. Dissertation. Urbana, IL: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Voyles, P.M. & Abelson, J.R. (2003). Medium-range order in amorphous silicon measured by fluctuation electron microscopy. Sol Energy Mater Sol Cells 78, 85113.
Voyles, P.M., Gerbi, J.E., Treacy, M.M.J., Gibson, J.M. & Abelson, J.R. (2001a). Increased medium-range order in amorphous silicon with increased substrate temperature. J Non-Cryst Sol 293295, 4552.
Voyles, P.M. & Muller, D.A. (2002). Fluctuation microscopy in the STEM. Ultramicroscopy 93, 147159.
Voyles, P.M., Zotov, N., Nakhmanson, S.M., Drabold, D.A., Gibson, J.M., Treacy, M.M.J. & Keblinski, P. (2001b). Structure and physical properties of paracrystalline atomistic models of amorphous silicon. J Appl Phys 90(9), 44374451.
Waseda, Y. (2002). Anomalous X-Ray Scattering for Materials Characterization. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.
Wochner, P., Gutt, C., Autenrieth, T., Demmer, T., Bugaev, V., Ortiz, A.D., Duri, A., Zontone, F., Grübel, G. & Dosch, H. (2009). X-ray cross correlation analysis uncovers hidden local symmetries in disordered matter. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 106(28), 1151111514.
Yi, F., Tiemeijer, P. & Voyles, P.M. (2010). Flexible formation of coherent probes on an aberration-corrected STEM with three condensers. J Elec Microsc 59(S1), S15S21.



Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed