The effects of boron doping on the microstructural evolution and mechanical and electrical properties of age-hardenable Cu–4Ti (at.%) alloys are investigated. In the quenched Cu–4Ti–0.03B (at.%) alloy, elemental B (boron) is preferentially segregated at the grain boundaries of the supersaturated solid-solution phase. The aging behavior of the B-doped alloy is mostly similar to that of conventional age-hardenable Cu–Ti alloys. In the early stage of aging at 450 °C, metastable β′-Cu4
Ti with fine needle-shaped precipitates continuously form in the matrix phase. Cellular discontinuous precipitates composed of the stable β-Cu4
Ti and solid-solution laminates are then formed and grown at the grain boundaries. However, the volume fraction of the discontinuous precipitates is lower in the Cu–4Ti–0.03B alloy than the Cu–4Ti alloy, particularly in the over-aging period of 72–120 h. The suppression of the formation of discontinuous precipitates eventually results in improvement of the hardness and tensile strength. It should be noted that minor B doping of Cu–Ti alloys also effectively enhances the elongation to fracture, which should be attributed to segregation of B at the grain boundaries.
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