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J. Imaging 2019, 5(2), 29; https://doi.org/10.3390/jimaging5020029

In-Situ Imaging of Molten High-Entropy Alloys Using Cold Neutrons

1
Materials Science & Engineering Department, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521, USA
2
Advanced Research Systems, Inc., Macungie, PA 18062, USA
3
Materials Science & Engineering Department, University of California, Irvine, CA 92697, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 29 January 2019 / Revised: 10 February 2019 / Accepted: 13 February 2019 / Published: 16 February 2019
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Abstract

Real-time neutron imaging was utilized to produce a movie-like series of radiographs for in-situ observation of the remixing of liquid state immiscibility that occurs in equiatomic CoCrCu with the addition of Ni. A previous neutron imaging study demonstrated that liquid state immiscibility can be observed in-situ for the equiatomic CoCrCu alloy. In this follow-up study, equiatomic buttons of CoCrCu were placed alongside small Ni buttons inside an alumina crucible in a high-temperature vacuum furnace. The mass of the Ni buttons was specifically selected such that when melted in the same crucible as the CoCrCu buttons, the overall composition would become equiatomic CoCrCuNi. Neutron imaging was simultaneously carried out to capture 10 radiographs in 20 °C steps from 1000 °C to 1500 °C and back down to 1000 °C. This, in turn, produced a movie-like series of radiographs that allow for the observation of the buttons melting, the transition from immiscible to miscible as Ni is alloyed into the CoCrCu system, and solidification. This novel imaging process showed the phase-separated liquids remixing into a single-phase liquid when Ni dissolves into the melt, which makes this technique crucial for understanding the liquid state behavior of these complex alloy systems. As metals are not transparent to X-ray imaging techniques at this scale, neutron imaging of melting and solidification allows for the observation of liquid state phase changes in real time. Thermodynamic calculations of the isopleth for CoCrCuNix were carried out to compare the observed results to the predictions resulting from the current Thermo-Calc TCHEA3 thermodynamic database. The calculations show a very good agreement with the experimental results, as the calculations indicate that the CoCrCuNix alloy solidifies from a single-phase liquid when x ≥ 0.275, which is close to the nominal concentration of the CoCrCuNi alloy (x = 0.25). The neutron imaging shows that the solidification of CoCrCuNi results from a single-phase liquid. This is evident as no changes in the neutron attenuation were observed during the solidification of the CoCrCuNi alloy. View Full-Text
Keywords: high-entropy alloys; neutron imaging; HEAs; multicomponent alloys; multi-principal element alloys; MPEAs; complex concentrated alloys; CCAs high-entropy alloys; neutron imaging; HEAs; multicomponent alloys; multi-principal element alloys; MPEAs; complex concentrated alloys; CCAs
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Derimow, N.; Santodonato, L.J.; MacDonald, B.E.; Le, B.; Lavernia, E.J.; Abbaschian, R. In-Situ Imaging of Molten High-Entropy Alloys Using Cold Neutrons. J. Imaging 2019, 5, 29.

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