Size Effect and Deformation Mechanism in Twinned Copper Nanowires

JP Sun and C Li and J Han and XY Shao and XW Yang and H Liu and D Song and AB Ma, METALS, 7, 438 (2017).

DOI: 10.3390/met7100438

Molecular dynamics simulations were performed to demonstrate the synergistic effects of the extrinsic size (nanowire length) and intrinsic size (twin boundary spacing) on the failure manner, yield strength, ductility and deformation mechanism of the twinned nanowires containing high density coherent twin boundaries CTBs paralleled to the nanowires' axis. The twinned nanowires show an intense extrinsic size effect, i.e., shorter is stronger and more ductile, and an intense intrinsic size effect, i.e., thinner is stronger. Notably, the strengthening effect degradation of CTBs in the twinned nanowires is observed with an increase in nanowire length: remarkable strengthening effect can be obtained for the short nanowires, but the strengthening effect becomes less pronounced for the long nanowires. The twinned nanowires fail via a ductile manner or via a brittle manner depending on the synergistic effect of the nanowire length and twin boundary spacing. By atomic-level observation of the plastic deformation, we found that the emission of a trailing 30 degrees partial from the free surface controls the yield behavior of the twinned nanowires. We also found that the special zigzag extended dislocations are formed by the dislocation- CTBs interactions, and propagate to sustain the plastic deformation.

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