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On the critical character of plasticity in metallic single crystals

Abstract : Previous acoustic emission (AE) experiments on ice single crystals, as well as numerical simulations, called for the possible occurrence of self-organized criticality (SOC) in collective dislocation dynamics during plastic deformation. Here, we report AE experiments on hcp metallic single crystals. Dislocation avalanches in relation with slip and twinning are identified with the only sources of AE. Both types of processes exhibit a strong intermittent character. The AE waveforms of slip and twinning events seem to be different, but from the point of view of the AE event energy distributions, no distinction is possible. The distributions always follow a power law given by P(E)E−τE, with τE = 1.5 ± 0.1, even when multi-slip and forest hardening occur. The exponent τE is in perfect agreement with those previously found in ice single crystals. Along with observed time clustering and interactions between avalanches, these results are new and strong arguments in favour of a general, SOC-type, framework for crystalline plasticity.
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Thiebaud Richeton, Patrik Dobron, Frantisek Chmelik, Jérôme Weiss, François Louchet. On the critical character of plasticity in metallic single crystals. Materials Science and Engineering, Elsevier, 2006, 424 (1-2), pp.190 à 195. ⟨10.1016/j.msea.2006.03.072⟩. ⟨insu-00375756⟩



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