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The mechanical response of modern alloys results from a complex interplay between existing microstructure and its evolution with time under stress. To unravel these processes, in situ approaches intrinsically have a critical advantage to explore the basic mechanisms involving dislocations, grain boundaries (GBs), and their interactions in real time. In this article, we discuss recent findings using in situ nanomechanical testing techniques and refined crystallographic analysis tools. Advancements in in situ nanomechanics not only include multiaxial loading conditions, which bring us closer to real-world applications, but also high strain-rate testing, which is critical to compare experiments and simulations. In particular, unraveling the details of GB-based mechanisms and related microstructural changes will facilitate significant breakthroughs in our understanding of the behavior of materials on macroscopic length scales.
Ni-based fcc alloys are frequently used as critical structural materials in nuclear energy applications. Despite extensive studies, fundamental questions remain regarding point defect migration and solute segregation as a function of grain boundary character after irradiation. In this study, a coupled experimental and modeling approach is used to understand the response of grain boundary character in a model Ni–5Cr alloy after high temperature heavy-ion irradiation. Radiation-induced segregation and void denuded zones were experimentally examined as a function of grain boundary character, while a kinetic rate theory model with grain boundary character boundary conditions was used to theoretically model Cr depletion in the alloy system. The results highlight major variations in the radiation response between the coherent and incoherent twin grain boundaries, but show limited disparity in defect sink strength between random low- and high-angle grain boundary regimes.
Spontaneous rectus sheath hematoma is an uncommon condition that can mimic other conditions associated with an acute abdomen. We report the case of a patient with a spontaneous rectus sheath hematoma due to a ruptured inferior epigastric artery pseudoaneurysm who presented with hypotension and severe abdominal pain and was diagnosed using emergency department point-of-care ultrasonography. Point-of-care ultrasonography has been increasingly used in the evaluation of emergency department patients with acute abdomen and hypotension to expedite the diagnosis and management of aortic aneurysm and intraperitoneal bleeding. Resuscitation and urgent surgical and interventional radiology consultations resulted in the successful embolization of a branch of the inferior epigastric artery and a good outcome.
The material characterization toolbox has recently experienced a number of parallel revolutionary advances, foreshadowing a time in the near future when material scientists can quantify material structure evolution across spatial and temporal space simultaneously. This will provide insight to reaction dynamics in four-dimensions, spanning multiple orders of magnitude in both temporal and spatial space. This study presents the authors’ viewpoint on the material characterization field, reviewing its recent past, evaluating its present capabilities, and proposing directions for its future development. Electron microscopy; atom probe tomography; x-ray, neutron and electron tomography; serial sectioning tomography; and diffraction-based analysis methods are reviewed, and opportunities for their future development are highlighted. Advances in surface probe microscopy have been reviewed recently and, therefore, are not included [D.A. Bonnell et al.: Rev. Modern Phys. in Review]. In this study particular attention is paid to studies that have pioneered the synergetic use of multiple techniques to provide complementary views of a single structure or process; several of these studies represent the state-of-the-art in characterization and suggest a trajectory for the continued development of the field. Based on this review, a set of grand challenges for characterization science is identified, including suggestions for instrumentation advances, scientific problems in microstructure analysis, and complex structure evolution problems involving material damage. The future of microstructural characterization is proposed to be one not only where individual techniques are pushed to their limits, but where the community devises strategies of technique synergy to address complex multiscale problems in materials science and engineering.