Triple junction solute segregation in Al-based polycrystals

N Tuchinda and CA Schuh, PHYSICAL REVIEW MATERIALS, 7, 023601 (2023).

DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevMaterials.7.023601

Solute segregation is a crucial means of stabilizing nanostructured alloys, and at very small grain sizes, this requires consideration of triple junctions (TJs), which attain a meaningful volume fraction and thus become relevant for bulk material behavior. Here, the solute segregation spectra for grain boundary (GB) and TJ sites are calculated for a large number of dilute Al-based binary systems with available interatomic potentials. A defect-identifying algorithm is applied to quantify the average GB thickness and classify the intergranular site spectra into GB and junction subspectra. The algorithm is also applied to a hybrid electronic-level database for GB segregation of various solutes in Al, yielding polycrystalline TJ solute segregation spectra from first principles. The results suggest that TJ segregation is alloy or interatomic potential dependent and can exhibit either boundary or junction preference. With these spectra as inputs, the spectral GB segregation model gives quantitative predictions of segregation as a function of grain size, temperature, and total solute concentration, suitable for alloy screening and design.

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