Uniaxial pulling and nano-scratching of a newly synthesized high entropy alloy

Fan, Pengfei and Katiyar, Nirmal Kumar and Zhou, Xiaowang and Goel, Saurav (2022) Uniaxial pulling and nano-scratching of a newly synthesized high entropy alloy. APL Materials, 10 (11). 111118. ISSN 2166-532X (https://doi.org/10.1063/5.0128135)

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Multicomponent alloys possessing nanocrystalline structure, often alluded to as Cantor alloys or high entropy alloys (HEAs), continue to attract the great attention of the research community. It has been suggested that about 64 elements in the periodic table can be mixed in various compositions to synthesize as many as ∼108 different types of HEA alloys. Nanomechanics of HEAs combining experimental and atomic simulations are rather scarce in the literature, which was a major motivation behind this work. In this spirit, a novel high-entropy alloy (Ni25Cu18.75Fe25Co25Al6.25) was synthesized using the arc melting method, which followed a joint simulation and experimental effort to investigate dislocation-mediated plastic mechanisms leading to side flow, pileup, and crystal defects formed in the sub-surface of the HEA during and after the scratch process. The major types of crystal defects associated with the plastic deformation of the crystalline face-centered cubic structure of HEA were 2,3,4-hcp layered such as defect coordination structures, coherent ∑3 twin boundary, and ∑11 fault or tilt boundary, in combination with Stair rods, Hirth locks, Frank partials, and Lomer–Cottrell locks. Moreover, 1/6 <112> Shockley, with exceptionally larger dislocation loops, was seen to be the transporter of stacking faults deeper into the substrate than the location of the applied cutting load. The (100) orientation showed the highest value for the kinetic coefficient of friction but the least amount of cutting stress and cutting temperature during HEA deformation, suggesting that this orientation is better than the other orientations for improved contact-mode manufacturing.