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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Effects of non-hydrostaticity and grain size on the pressure-induced phase transition of the CoCrFeMnNi high-entropy alloy

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Recently, an irreversible polymorphic transition from face-centered cubic to hexagonal close-packing was surprisingly observed under high pressure in the prototype CoCrFeMnNi high-entropy alloys (HEAs) by various research groups. This unexpected phase transition brings new insights into the stability of HEAs, and its irreversibility stimulates exploration for new HEAs via high-pressure compression synthesis. However, the onset pressure for the phase transition was reported to fluctuate over a vast range from ∼7 to above 49 GPa in the reported experiments. The reason for this inconsistency remains unclear and puzzles the HEA community. To address this problem, this work systematically investigates the effects of non-hydrostaticity and grain size. Our results demonstrate that larger deviatoric stress induced by the non-hydrostaticity of the pressure medium and larger grain size of the initial sample can both promote a phase transition and, therefore, considerably depress the onset pressure.

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