, Volume 4, Issue 12, pp 1261-1267
Date: 19 Oct 2011

Surface dislocation nucleation mediated deformation and ultrahigh strength in sub-10-nm gold nanowires

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Abstract

The plastic deformation and the ultrahigh strength of metals at the nanoscale have been predicted to be controlled by surface dislocation nucleation. In situ quantitative tensile tests on individual 〈111〉 single crystalline ultrathin gold nanowires have been performed and significant load drops observed in stress-strain curves suggest the occurrence of such dislocation nucleation. High-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) imaging and molecular dynamics simulations demonstrated that plastic deformation was indeed initiated and dominated by surface dislocation nucleation, mediating ultrahigh yield and fracture strength in sub-10-nm gold nanowires.