Modelling the growth and filling of creep-induced grain-boundary cavities in self-healing alloys

Yifan Fu*, S. van der Zwaag, N. H. van Dijk

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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A set of numerical and analytical models is presented to predict the growth and contraction of grain-boundary creep cavities in binary self-healing alloys. In such alloys, the healing is realised by preferential precipitation of supersaturated solutes at the free surface of the cavity. The cavity grows due to the diffusional flux of vacancies towards the cavity, which is driven by the stress gradient along the grain boundary. Upon deposition of healing solute atoms on the cavity wall, effectively vacancies are removed from the cavity due to the inverse Kirkendall effect. The competition between the inward and outward vacancy fluxes results in a time-dependent filling ratio (i.e. the fraction of the vacancies removed from the original cavity) of the creep cavity. It is found that for stress levels lower than a critical stress σcr, the filling ratio can proceed to unity, i.e. to complete filling and annihilation of the pore. For applied stresses higher than σcr, complete filling is not achieved and the open volume of the creep cavity will continue to grow once a maximum filling ratio is reached at the critical time tcr. The critical stress σcr, critical time tcr, and time for complete filling th (if fully filling is achievable) are derived from the models for different combinations of parameters. The results from the analytical model and from previous nanotomography experiments are compared and are found to be in good agreement. Graphical abstract: [Figure not available: see fulltext.]

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12034-12054
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Materials Science
Issue number25
Publication statusPublished - 2022


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