Micro-plasticity and intermittent dislocation activity in a simplified micro-structural model

P. M. Derlet, R. Maaß

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Here we present a model to study the micro-plastic regime of a stress-strain curve. In this model an explicit dislocation population represents the mobile dislocation content and an internal shear-stress field represents a mean-field description of the immobile dislocation content. The mobile dislocations are constrained to a simple dipolar mat geometry and modelled via a dislocation dynamics (DD) algorithm, whilst the shear-stress field is chosen to be a sinusoidal function of distance along the mat direction. The sinusoidal function, defined by a periodic length and a shear-stress amplitude, is interpreted to represent a pre-existing micro-structure. These model parameters, along with the mobile dislocation density, are found to admit a diversity of micro-plastic behaviour involving intermittent plasticity in the form of a scale-free avalanche phenomenon, with an exponent and scaling-collapse for the strain-burst magnitude distribution that is in agreement with mean-field theory and similar to that seen in experiment and more complex DD simulations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number035007
JournalModelling and Simulation in Materials Science and Engineering
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 2013
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Modeling and Simulation
  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Computer Science Applications


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