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Recent advances in continuum plasticity: phenomenological modeling and experimentation using X-ray diffraction.


This work explores the field of continuum plasticity from two fronts. On the theory side, we establish a complete specification of a phenomenological theory of plasticity for single crystals. The model serves as an alternative to the popular crystal plasticity formulation. Such a model has been previously proposed in the literature; the new contribution made here is the constitutive framework and resulting simulations. We calibrate the model to available data and use a simple numerical method to explore resulting predictions in plane strain boundary value problems. Results show promise for further investigation of the plasticity model. Conveniently, this theory comes with a corresponding experimental tool in X-ray diffraction. Recent advances in hardware technology at synchrotron sources have led to an increased use of the technique for studies of plasticity in the bulk of materials. The method has been successful in qualitative observations of material behavior, but its use in quantitative studies seeking to extract material properties is open for investigation. Therefore in the second component of the thesis several contributions are made to synchrotron X-ray diffraction experiments, in terms of method development as well as the quantitative reporting of constitutive parameters. In the area of method development, analytical tools are developed to determine the available precision of this type of experiment - a crucial aspect to determine if the method is to be used for quantitative studies. We also extract kinematic information relating to intragranular inhomogeneity which is not accessible with traditional methods of data analysis. In the area of constitutive parameter identification, we use the method to extract parameters corresponding to the proposed formulation of plasticity for a titanium alloy (HCP) which is continuously sampled by X-ray diffraction during uniaxial extension. These results and the lessons learned from the efforts constitute early reporting of the quantitative profitability of undertaking such a line of experimentation for the study of plastic deformation processes.

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