Atomistic Simulations of Plasticity in Heterogeneous Nanocrystalline Ni Lamella


Atomistic simulations were performed on heterogeneous nanocrystalline (NC) Ni lamella made up of alternating NC and single crystalline (SC) layers to explore the effect of the heterogeneous microstructure on their mechanical response. It was found that the heterogeneous NC Ni lamella exhibit higher strength and better crack resistance than the pure NC Ni. After quantitatively analyzing the distribution of Von Mises shear strain in each sample, we found that the SC layer in heterogeneous NC Ni lamella can not only strengthen the whole sample following the conventional composite strengthening mechanism, but also homogenize the plastic strains in the NC layer and suppress the crack nucleation and propagation. The findings from this study can provide valuable insight into improving nanomaterial processing techniques, and have implications for the design of gradient or heterogeneous structures with superior properties.


Materials Science and Engineering


This work was supported by the grants from NSF CAREER Award ( CMMI-1652662 ). The supercomputer time allocation for completing the atomistic simulations was provided by the Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment (XSEDE), award number MSS170025 .

Keywords and Phrases

Ductility; Gradient; Heterogeneous; Nanocrystalline

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)


Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version


File Type





© 2018 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jan 2018