Multiscale description of carbon-supersaturated ferrite in severely drawn pearlitic wires

GA Nematollahi and B Grabowski and D Raabe and J Neugebauer, ACTA MATERIALIA, 111, 321-334 (2016).

DOI: 10.1016/j.actamat.2016.03.052

A multistate simulation approach based on atomistic calculations and a discrete diffusion model is developed and applied to carbon- supersaturated ferrite, as experimentally observed in severely deformed pearlitic steel. We employ the embedded atom method and the nudged elastic band technique to determine the energetic profile of a carbon atom around a screw dislocation in bcc iron. The results clearly indicate a special region in the proximity of the dislocation core where C atoms are strongly bound, but where they can nevertheless diffuse easily due to low barriers. Our analysis suggests that the previously proposed pipe mechanism for the case of a screw dislocation is unlikely. Instead, our atomistic as well as the diffusion model results support the so-called drag mechanism, by which a mobile screw dislocation is able to transport C atoms along its glide plane. Combining the C-dislocation interaction energies with density-functional-theory calculations of the strain dependent C formation energy allows us to investigate the C supersaturation of the ferrite phase under wire drawing conditions. Corresponding results for local and total C concentrations agree well with previous atom probe tomography measurements indicating that a significant contribution to the supersaturation during wire drawing is due to dislocations. (C) 2016 Acta Materialia Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

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