Materials Science and Engineering: A

Nanocrystalline materials by crystallization of metal-metalloid glasses

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The formation of ultrafine microstructures by crystallization of metal-metalloid glasses was investigated by means of electron microscopy as well as in situ time-resolved X-ray diffraction. The results can be understood on the basis of nucleation and growth theories, taking into account the effect of recalescence during massive crystallization and the differences in the mode of crystallization and the diffusivity. In a polymorphic crystallizing Fe66Ni10B24 glass the finest microstructure can be achieved by annealing at temperatures significantly below the "nose" of the TTT diagram; the finest grain size can be calculated and observed to be in the range of about 0.1 μm. In glassy Fe73.4Cu1Nb3.1Si13.4B9. 1 (FINEMENT) the combination of a reduced growth rate due to the niobium content as well as with increasing size of the primary crystals and an accelerated nucleation rate due to the copper additions allows the formation of extremely fine-grained microstructures in primary crystallizing metal-metalloid glasses at temperatures above the glass transition. © 1991.