Debye-Waller coefficient of heavily deformed nanocrystalline iron

P Scardi and L Rebuffi and M Abdellatief and A Flor and A Leonardi, JOURNAL OF APPLIED CRYSTALLOGRAPHY, 50, 508-518 (2017).

DOI: 10.1107/S160057671700022X

Synchrotron radiation X-ray diffraction (XRD) patterns from an extensively ball-milled iron alloy powder were collected at 100, 200 and 300 K. The results were analysed together with those using extended X-ray absorption fine structure, measured on the same sample at liquid nitrogen temperature (77 K) and at room temperature (300 K), to assess the contribution of static disorder to the Debye-Waller coefficient (B-iso). Both techniques give an increase of similar to 20% with respect to bulk reference iron, a noticeably smaller difference than reported by most of the literature for similar systems. Besides good quality XRD patterns, proper consideration of the temperature diffuse scattering seems to be the key to accurate values of the Debye-Waller coefficient. Molecular dynamics simulations of nanocrystalline iron aggregates, mapped on the evidence provided by XRD in terms of domain size distribution, shed light on the origin of the observed B-iso increase. The main contribution to the static disorder is given by the grain boundary, while line and point defects have a much smaller effect.

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