Chemical short-range ordering regulated dislocation cross slip in high-entropy alloys

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Article number165144
Journal / PublicationJournal of Alloys and Compounds
Online published25 Apr 2022
Publication statusPublished - 5 Aug 2022


High-entropy alloys (HEAs) have received extensive interest owing to their unusual mechanical properties as a result of the extreme compositional complexity. Understanding the dislocation behavior under the influence of chemical disorder, especially chemical short-range ordering (SRO), which is commonly found in HEAs, is fundamental to the rational design of high-performance alloy systems. Here, we systematically investigate the effect of disorder and SRO on the regulation mechanism of dislocation nucleation and cross-slip in HEAs through a combination of Monte Carlo methods, molecular dynamic (MD) simulations, and theoretical analysis. Our results demonstrate that the incipient plasticity of HEAs under nanoindentation is mainly controlled by the nucleation and cross-slip of Shockley partial dislocation loops, which are found to be highly dependent on SRO. In contrast to traditional strengthening, SRO leads to a significant increase in the stable nucleation radius of the dislocation loop and cross-slip resistance. Strengthening is then achieved due to the extension of the dislocation nucleation period and the high resistance for dislocation cross-slip. Aided by the transition path analysis and theoretical model, we show that the local compositional changes originating from SRO, specifically for strong Co-Cr pairs, are the dominant factors governing the dislocation properties and accordingly, the strengthening effects. Finally, the SRO strengthen effect is further validated against different alloy systems with different SRO types. These findings suggest that the elasticity and strength of HEAs can be improved through the prolonging of the nucleation period of dislocations resulting from SRO, dictating an avenue for enhancing the mechanical properties of HEAs.

Research Area(s)

  • High entropy alloys, Strengthening theory, Short-range order (SRO), Dislocation nucleation, Cross-slip