The mechanical properties of laminated microscale composites of Al/Al2O3
The tensile properties, at both room and elevated temperatures, of laminated thin films containing alternate layers of aluminium and aluminium oxide were investigated. At room temperature the strength of the films followed a Hall-Petch type relationship dependent on the interlamellar spacing, and the strength could be extrapolated from data for conventional grain size aluminium. At the finest interlayer spacing of 50 nm, the strength was equivalent toμ/70, whereμ is the shear strength of aluminium and the samples exhibited very extensive ductility. At elevated temperatures, cavitation became an important deformation mechanism but it occurred preferentially at Al/Al rather than Al/Al2O3 boundaries. The microstructure of the films was probed using transmission electron microscopy and fractography was used to investigate deformation and fracture mechanisms.
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