Articles written in Bulletin of Materials Science
Volume 23 Issue 1 February 2000 pp 39-45 Metallic Materials
Discontinuous precipitation (DP) occurs in many alloy systems under certain conditions. It is called discontinuous precipitation because precipitation occurs on prior matrix grain boundaries followed by grain boundary movement. The DP nodule consists of alternate lamellae of the precipitate and the matrix respectively. The chemical driving force for DP is one of solute supersaturation. Although solute supersaturation is responsible for precipitation, it has to be coupled with another driving force to explain grain boundary migration. This coupling driving force has been identified to be diffusional coherency strain which has been verified to be active in diffusion induced grain boundary migration and liquid film migration.
To test diffusional coherency strain theory for discontinuous precipitation Mg-7Al and Mg-7Al-1Pb alloys were studied. While the fraction transformed was high at 6% in Mg-7Al alloy, dit was significantly low at 2% in Mg-7Al-1Pb alloy. The velocity of DP nodules decreased by half in alloy with Pb as compared to the alloy without Pb. Theoretical calculations also predict that the misfit parameter δth decreases with the addition of Pb. These observations are an evidence to the fact that diffusional coherency strain is the most active driving force for the movement of the grain boundaries of the DP nodules during discontinuous precipitation in Mg-Al alloy.
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