Since the first synthesis of bulk metallic glass, the mechanical properties of this material became attractive for a number of scientific teams. Bulk metallic glasses exhibit high strength and a significant region of elastic deformation but usually fail in catastrophic fracture without appreciable plastic deformation. Ductilisation of glasses became possible due to either extrinsic or intrinsic armouring ductile phases, which allowed emerging of a new class of material: bulk metallic glass composites. Due to the progress achieved in the development of various alloy systems suitable for preparation of bulk metallic glasses, the need for better understanding the mechanisms, which allow deformation of this material and promote its final failure, became even stronger.
A number of high-level scientific works has been published but the problem of plastic deformation of BMGs was not singled out yet. Moreover, the study of the failure and fracture surface characteristics is hidden behind discoveries of new glass-forming alloy systems. The further development of BMGs as well as BMG matrix composites improving the lack of plasticity and expected commercial application increase the pressure for a systematic study of deformation, fracture propagation and failure. This project will improve the understanding of the deformation mechanisms contributing to the macroscopic ductility of bulk metallic glasses. Emphasis will be placed particularly to study the mutual relationship between deformation and failure.
The atomic and microscopic structure will be related with the bulk properties of the material. Progress is expected in description of shear-band interactions within shear-band arrays. The results will be discussed in terms of future enhancement of bulk metallic glasses.
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