Shear avalanches in plastic deformation of a metallic glass composite

X. Tong, G. Wang, J. Yi, J. L. Ren, S. Pauly, Y. L. Gao, Q. J. Zhai, N. Mattern, K. A. Dahmen, P. K. Liaw, J. Eckert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Changes in intermittent shear avalanches during plastic deformation of a Cu50Zr45Ti5 (atomic percent) alloy in response to variant structures including fully glassy phase and/or nanocrystal/glass binary phase are investigated. Second crystalline phases are introduced into the glassy-phase matrix of a Cu50Zr45Ti5 metallic glass to interfere with the shear-avalanche process, which can release the shear-strain concentration, and then tune the critically-dynamic behavior of the shear avalanche. By combining microstructural observations of the nanocrystals with the statistical analysis of the corresponding deformation behavior, we determine the statistic distribution of shear-avalanche sizes during plastic deformation, and established its dependence on the geometric distribution of nanocrystals. The scaling behavior of the distribution of shear-avalanche sizes follows a power-law relation accompanied by an exponentially-decaying scaling function in the pure metallic glass, and the metallic glass containing the small nanocrystals, which can be described by the mean-field theory. The large shear-avalanche events are dominated by structural tuning-parameters, i.e., the resistance of shear banding, and the size and volume fraction of the second crystalline phase in metallic glasses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)141-155
Number of pages15
JournalInternational journal of plasticity
StatePublished - Feb 1 2016


  • A. Twinning
  • B. Glass material
  • C. Probability and statistics
  • Dynamics of shear avalanche

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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