Frenkel defect recombination in Ni and Ni-containing concentrated solid- solution alloys

SJ Zhao and Y Osetsky and AV Barashev and YW Zhang, ACTA MATERIALIA, 173, 184-194 (2019).

DOI: 10.1016/j.actamat.2019.04.060

Recombination of Frenkel defects is an important process that contributes to the performance of materials under irradiation. In this work, the recombination mechanisms of Frenkel defects in face-centered cubic Ni and Ni-containing solid-solution alloys are investigated based on interatomic potentials and ab initio calculations. It is found that, in pure Ni, the spontaneous recombination volume for a 100 dumbbell interstitial is 18 Omega and 34 Omega (Omega is the atomic volume) with the empirical potential and ab initio method respectively. Addition of Fe atoms increases the spontaneous recombination volume of Frenkel defects significantly. For those stable Frenkel defects that cannot recombine, a stronger attractive force between the interstitial and the vacancy is found in concentrated Ni-Fe alloys compared to in pure Ni, which provides the driving force for enhanced recombination. The distribution of life-time for Frenkel defects at finite temperature suggests that recombination in Ni-Fe alloys is delayed due to the sluggish diffusion of interstitials. Finally, recombination in Ni-Fe-Cr alloys is studied by substituting a portion of Fe in Ni-Fe with Cr. A remarkable increase in recombination probability is observed in this case because of the presence of less stable Cr-containing than Fe- containing dumbbell interstitials and lower migration barriers of vacancies. This work reveals that higher defect recombination probability in concentrated alloys is responsible for the experimentally observed enhanced irradiation resistance. (C) 2019 Acta Materialia Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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