The development of Nb-silicide based alloys is frustrated by the lack of composition-process-microstructure-property data for the new alloys, and by the shortage of and/or disagreement between thermodynamic data for key binary and ternary systems that are essential for designing (selecting) alloys to meet property goals. Recent publications have discussed the importance of the parameters δ (related to atomic size), Δχ (related to electronegativity) and valence electron concentration (VEC) (number of valence electrons per atom filled into the valence band) for the alloying behavior of Nb-silicide based alloys (J Alloys Compd 748 (2018) 569), their solid solutions (J Alloys Compd 708 (2017) 961), the tetragonal Nb5
(Materials 11 (2018) 69), and hexagonal C14-NbCr2
and cubic A15-Nb3
X phases (Materials 11 (2018) 395) and eutectics with Nbss
(Materials 11 (2018) 592). The parameter values were calculated using actual compositions for alloys, their phases and eutectics. This paper is about the relationships that exist between the alloy parameters δ, Δχ and VEC, and creep rate and isothermal oxidation (weight gain) and the concentrations of solute elements in the alloys. Different approaches to alloy design (selection) that use property goals and these relationships for Nb-silicide based alloys are discussed and examples of selected alloy compositions and their predicted properties are given. The alloy design methodology, which has been called NICE (Niobium Intermetallic Composite Elaboration), enables one to design (select) new alloys and to predict their creep and oxidation properties and the macrosegregation of Si in cast alloys.
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