Origin of serrated flow in bulk metallic glasses

Xie Xie, Yu Chieh Lo, Yang Tong, Junwei Qiao, Gongyao Wang, Shigenobu Ogata, Hairong Qi, Karin A. Dahmen, Yanfei Gao, Peter K. Liaw

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Bulk metallic glasses (BMGs) possess amorphous structure and show unique mechanical properties, such as extremely high strength and excellent damage tolerance, entitling them as potential structural materials. So far a great amount of work has been conducted to study BMGs’ macroscopic mechanical properties and examine corresponding microscopic deformation defects. However, the connection between macroscopic inhomogeneous deformation at room temperature and microscopic deformation carriers is still poorly understood, due to the lack of an appropriate experimental technique to directly probe the inhomogeneous deformation process on the proper spatial and temporal scales. Here we present the deformation details via in situ thermal imaging about the evolution of heat bands associated with successive serration behavior. For the first time, our experimental work clarifies the coupling of serrated flows with shear band activities, especially the often omitted fine serrations induced by shear band nucleation or the early stage of propagation. Meanwhile, serration behavior of BMGs is simulated through the kinetic Monte Carlo (kMC) method by integrating local heating (thermal softening and β-relaxation) effects, which exhibits good agreement with experimental results. These findings will advance our fundamental understanding of the shear band operation down to microscopic level, which may shed light on the control of shear banding for the application of BMGs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)634-642
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids
StatePublished - Mar 2019


  • Bulk metallic glasses
  • Kinetic Monte–Carlo
  • Serrated flow
  • Thermoplasticity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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