Ion irradiation induced nanocrystal formation in amorphous Zr55Cu30Al10Ni5 alloy
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Ion irradiation can be used to induce partial crystallization in metallic glasses to improve their surface properties. We investigated the microstructural changes in ribbon Zr55Cu30Al10Ni5 metallic glass after 1 MeV Cu-ion irradiation at room temperature, to a fluence of 1.0 1016 cm-2. In contrast to a recent report by others that there was no irradiation induced crystallization in the same alloy [S. Nagata, S. Higashi, B. Tsuchiya, K. Toh, T. Shikama, K. Takahiro, K. Ozaki, K. Kawatusra, S. Yamamoto, A. Inouye, Nucl. Instr. and Meth. B 257 (2007) 420], we have observed nanocrystals in the as-irradiated samples. Two groups of nanocrystals, one with diameters of 5-10 nm and another with diameters of 50-100 nm are observed by using high resolution transmission electron microscopy. Experimentally measured planar spacings (d-values) agree with the expectations for Cu10Zr7, NiZr2 and CuZr2 phases. We further discussed the possibility to form a substitutional intermetallic (NixCu1-x)Zr2 phase. 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.