Probing discontinuous precipitation in U-Nb Institutional Repository Document uri icon


  • U-Nb's discontinuous precipitation, $gamma^{bcc}_{matrix}
    ightarrow alpha^{orth}_{cellular} + gamma'^{bcc}_{cellular}$, is intriguing in the sense that it allows formation and growth of the metastable $gamma'$ phase during the course of its occurrence. Previous attempts to explain the thermodynamic origin of U-Nb's discontinuous precipitation hypothesized that the energy of $alpha$ forms an intermediate common tangent with the first potential of the double-well energy of $gamma$ at the $gamma'$ composition. While this hypothesis is eligible and consistent with the experimental observation of gradual increase in $gamma'$ composition at increasing temperature, it is in conflict with recent experiments whose results indicated a distribution of $gamma'$ compositions in the vicinity of 50 at\%Nb. To shed some light onto this issue, the current work investigates the origin of U-Nb's discontinuous precipitation in view of fundamental thermodynamics and kinetics, taken from the perspective of phase-field theory. It has been showed that local misfit strain tends to play a crucial role in the formation and growth the discontinuous precipitation. Depending on the magnitude of strain developed at grain boundaries, either an increasing $gamma'$ composition or a random distribution of $gamma'$ composition around the equiatomic value with respect to increasing temperature could be expected.

author list (cited authors)

  • Duong, T., Hackenberg, R. E., Attari, V., Landa, A., Turchi, P., & Arroyave, R.

citation count

  • 0

complete list of authors

  • Duong, Thien||Hackenberg, Robert E||Attari, Vahid||Landa, Alex||Turchi, Patrice EA||Arroyave, Raymundo

Book Title

  • arXiv

publication date

  • July 2019