Atomistic investigation of the effect of nano-structural shape on the mechanical response of SiC/Cu interpenetrating phase nanocomposites

S Shadlou and LD Wegner, COMPUTATIONAL MATERIALS SCIENCE, 117, 428-436 (2016).

DOI: 10.1016/j.commatsci.2016.02.023

The effects of different nano-structural phase shapes on the mechanical properties of a SiC/Cu interpenetrating phase composite (IPC) at the atomic scale are investigated by using molecular dynamics (MD) simulation. Two different geometrical models, namely IPCs with a spherical interconnected phase and a cylindrical interconnected phase, are considered in the present study. In addition, the locations of SiC and Cu phases are altered as inner and outer phases in each model. Moreover, the effects of volume fraction on the Young's modulus and ultimate strength of the IPCs are investigated and validity of the Hashin-Shtrikman model at the atomic scale is examined. To further investigate the extent to which geometry of phases may affect the mechanical response of an IPC, thirty models with randomly generated geometries are created and their mechanical responses are studied. The effect of size of IPC on its mechanical response was also investigated. It is found that the effect of shape on the IPC's behavior is linked to both the volume fraction of the phases in the composite and the geometry of phases. The results show that an IPC's interconnected phase can noticeably affect both its elastic and plastic response. (C) 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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