Analysis of multistep transformations in single-crystal NiTi

A. J.Wagoner Johnson, R. F. Hamilton, H. Sehitoglu, G. Biallas, H. J. Maier, Y. I. Chumlyakov, H. S. Woo

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The effects of composition and heat treatment on the thermally induced phase-transformation behavior of single-crystal NiTi with compositions of 50.1, 50.4, 50.8, and 51.5 at. pct Ni are presented in this article. Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) experiments reveal that a heat-treated 50.1 at. pct Ni alloy exhibits an unprecedented multiple-step transformation (MST) on both heating and cooling, with up to four peaks. This behavior is absent in the higher-Ni-content alloys. In polycrystalline NiTi alloys, MSTs have been attributed to microstructure heterogeneities such as grain boundaries and dislocations, which influence precipitation. In-situ scanning electron microscopy (SEM) results show that the MST in the 50.1 at. pct Ni alloy is associated with single-crystal defects such as dendrites and low-angle boundaries. A heterogeneous precipitate distribution is observed in transmission electron microscopy (TEM) images of the same low-Ni alloy, also associated with the defects, creating conditions that have been shown in other studies to promote the MST in polycrystals. These MSTs are not observed for high-Ni single-crystal alloys containing the same defects. In this article, we describe the origin of the extraordinary forward and reverse MSTs in the low-Ni alloy and the absence of the MST in high-Ni alloys. Transformation sequences are proposed based on the contrasting precipitate microstructures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)919-928
Number of pages10
JournalMetallurgical and Materials Transactions A: Physical Metallurgy and Materials Science
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2005

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Metals and Alloys


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