Commercial MgAlZn alloy AZ31 was processed by two techniques of severe plastic deformation (SPD): equal channel angular pressing and high pressure torsion. Several microscopic techniques, namely light, scanning and transmission electron microscopy, electron backscatter diffraction, and automated crystallographic orientation mapping were employed to characterize the details of microstructure evolution and grain fragmentation of the alloy as a function of strain imposed to the material using these SPD techniques. The advantages and drawbacks of these techniques, as well as the limits of their resolution, are discussed in detail. The results of microstructure observations indicate the effectiveness of grain refinement by severe plastic deformation in this alloy. The thermal stability of ultrafine-grained structure that is important for practical applications is also discussed.
Part of the book: Modern Electron Microscopy in Physical and Life Sciences
In this chapter, the detailed characterization of processes of grain fragmentation and refinement resulting from gradual imposition of strain by individual equal‐channel angular pressing (ECAP) passes is reported. A great emphasis is placed on the processing of materials with different crystal structure, particularly the face‐centred cubic (FCC), the body‐centred cubic (BCC) and the hexagonal close‐packed (HCP). Advanced techniques of electron microscopy, electron and X‐ray diffraction and positron annihilation spectroscopy have been employed to characterize microstructure, texture and defect evolution in the material as a function of strain imposed by ECAP. Microstructure development was correlated with mechanical properties obtained by both mechanical tests and microhardness measurements. Processes controlling the microstructure refinement and texture development were identified and discussed in detail.
Part of the book: Severe Plastic Deformation Techniques