Reversible-to-irreversible transition of colloidal polycrystals under cyclic athermal quasistatic deformation

Khushika and L Laurson and PK Jana, PHYSICAL REVIEW E, 108, 064612 (2023).

DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevE.108.064612

Cyclic loading on granular packings and amorphous media exhibits a transition from reversible elastic behavior to irreversible plasticity. The present study compares the irreversibility transition and microscopic details of colloidal polycrystals under oscillatory tensile- compressive and shear strain. Under both modes, the systems exhibit a reversible to irreversible transition. However, the strain amplitude at which the transition is observed is larger in the shear strain than in the tensile-compressive mode. The threshold strain amplitude is confirmed by analyzing the dynamical properties, such as mobility and atomic strain (von Mises shear strain and the volumetric strain). The structural changes are quantified using a hexatic order parameter. Under both modes of deformation, dislocations and grain boundaries in polycrystals disappear, and monocrystals are formed. We also recognize the dislocation motion through grains. The key difference is that strain accumulates diagonally in oscillatory tensile-compressive deformation, whereas in shear deformation, strain accumulation is along the x or y axis.

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