Structural relaxation affecting shear-transformation avalanches in metallic glasses

T Niiyama and M Wakeda and T Shimokawa and S Ogata, PHYSICAL REVIEW E, 100, 043002 (2019).

DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevE.100.043002

Avalanche behaviors, characterized by power-law statistics and structural relaxation that induces shear localization in amorphous plasticity, play an essential role in deciding the mechanical properties of amorphous metallic solids (i.e., metallic glasses). However, their interdependence is still not fully understood. To investigate the influence of structural relaxation on elementary avalanche behavior, we perform molecular-dynamics simulations for the shear deformation test of metallic glasses using two typical metallic-glass models comprising a less-relaxed (as-quenched) glass and a well-relaxed (well-aged) glass exhibiting a relatively homogeneous deformation and a shear-band-like heterogeneous deformation, respectively. The data on elementary avalanches obtained from both glass models follow the same power-law statistics with different maximum event sizes, and the well-relaxed glass shows shear localization. Evaluating the spatial correlation functions of the nonaffine squared displacements of atoms during each elementary avalanche event, we observe that the shapes of the elementary avalanche regions in the well-relaxed glasses tend to be anisotropic, whereas those in the less-relaxed glasses are relatively isotropic. Furthermore, we demonstrate that a temporal clustering in the direction of the avalanche propagation emerges, and a considerable correlation between the anisotropy and avalanche size exists in the well-relaxed glass model.

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