The role of EBSD in studying creep in metals

Northover, S. M. (2010). The role of EBSD in studying creep in metals. In: Electron Backscatter Diffraction Meeting, 29-30 Mar 2010, Derby.


The use of EBSD in studying creep in metals is reviewed and the promise EBSD holds for further advances is discussed.

There are three main ways that EBSD can contribute to studies of creep in metals: the first two are more macroscopic involving measurements over an area containing many grains and the third more microscopic.

The first is through the measurement of textures and grain boundary character distributions: extensive plastic deformation causes changes in crystallographic texture and EBSD has been used to investigate texture change during creep in Zircaloy, Aluminium, Fe-Cr alloys, martensitic steel, Invar steel, magnesium alloys and Hastelloy. More recently EBSD has been used to study the effects of grain boundary character distributions on creep in various metals and investigate what part grain boundary engineering can play in reducing their propensity to creep fracture in service.

The second is through using EBSD over a wide area to the measure the macroscopic plastic strain at different stages of a metal’s creep life and feeding this into improving models of creep life under different conditions of loading and temperature.

The third way that EBSD can be used to study creep is to use it to examine the local strain and dislocation structure within grains and around grain boundaries to elucidate the mechanisms by which creep deformation and damage accumulate with the aim of modifying this structure to make it more resistant to further damage.

Techniques to maximise the angular and spatial resolution of EBSD are key to advances on the microscopic scale while for studies over a wider area, techniques for speeding up data acquisition and processing without significant loss of accuracy are more important.

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