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Microstructure evolution and deformation mechanisms during high rate and cryogenic sliding of copper

: Chen, X.; Schneider, R.; Gumbsch, P.; Greiner, C.


Acta Materialia 161 (2018), pp.138-149
ISSN: 1359-6454
ISSN: 1873-2453
Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft DFG
GR 4174/1
Journal Article
Fraunhofer IWM ()
copper; tribology; dislocation; twinning; strain rate

Frictional sliding induces a distinct discontinuity in the microstructure between a subsurface layer and the underlying bulk material, which strongly influences the tribological performance. Here, the strain rate and temperature dependence of such tribologically induced microstructure evolution was systematically investigated during reciprocating sliding of copper. It was found that an increase in strain rate and a decrease in temperature each result in a transition in the dominating deformation mechanism from dislocation slip to twinning-mediated plasticity at the very beginning of sliding. A sequence of deformation mechanisms was revealed under high rate and/or cryogenic sliding (strain rate ∼ 104 s−1; liquid nitrogen temperature): First, nanoscale dislocation trace lines form beneath the surface during the first forward pass; Second, partial dislocation nucleation from the sliding surface accompanied by nano-twinning and abundant stacking faults in the backward pass; Third, formation of a nanocrystalline layer upon further sliding. Sliding induced surface roughening is found to assist partial dislocation nucleation from the surface during high rate and cryogenic sliding. Our results suggest that the sliding surface can act as an effective source of dislocations to initiate and accommodate associated plastic deformation, which may be explored to model the microstructure evolution during sliding.