Uniaxial compression of single crystal and polycrystalline tantalum

Whiteman, G. and Case, S. and Millett, J.C.F. and Cox, M.J. and Avraam, P. and Dear, J.P. and Sancho, A. and Hooper, P.A. (2019) Uniaxial compression of single crystal and polycrystalline tantalum. Materials Science and Engineering: A, 759. pp. 70-77. ISSN 0921-5093 (https://doi.org/10.1016/j.msea.2019.05.006)

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A series of compression experiments characterising the elastic-plastic response of single crystal and polycrystalline tantalum from quasi-static to intermediate strain-rates (10^−3 – 10^3 s−1) over a range of temperatures (233–438 K) are reported in this paper. The single crystal experiments show significant differences in the response of the three principle crystal orientations of tantalum in terms of yield, work hardening and ultimate deformed shapes. Modelling is undertaken using a dislocation mechanics based crystal plasticity finite element model giving insight into the underlying microscopic processes that govern the macroscopic response. The simulations show the importance of the dislocation mobility relations and laws governing the evolution of the mobile dislocation density for capturing the correct behaviours. The inclusion of the twinning/anti-twinning asymmetry is found to influence [100] orientation most strongly, and is shown to be critical for matching the relative yield strengths. In general the simulations are able to adequately match experimental trends although some specific details such as exact strain hardening evolution are not reproduced suggesting a more complex hardening model is required. 3D finite element simulations approximating the tests are also undertaken and are able to predict the final deformed sample shapes well once the twinning/anti-twinning asymmetry is included (particularly for the [100] orientation). The polycrystalline data in both as-received and cold rolled conditions shows the initial yield strength is highest and work hardening rate is lowest for the cold-rolled material due to the increase in mobile dislocation density caused by the prior work. The general behavioural trends with temperature and strain-rate of the polycrystalline materials are reproduced in the single crystal data however the specific form of stress versus strain curves are significantly different. This is discussed in terms of the similar active slip systems in polycrystalline material to high symmetry single crystals but with the significant added effect of grain boundary interactions.