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Cryogenic Stress-Driven Grain Growth Observed via Microcompression with in situ Electron Backscatter Diffraction


The deformation of materials at cryogenic temperature is of interest for space, arctic, and fundamental science applications. In this work, a custom-built cooling system attached to a commercial picoindenter was used for in situ cryogenic microcompression testing of equal-channel angular-pressed copper with real-time electron backscatter diffraction. Stress-driven grain growth at cryogenic temperatures was observed during a series of elastic and plastic deformations. These results provide direct evidence for the previously predicted phenomenon, whereas previous ex situ examinations demonstrated coarsening after cryogenic loading when samples were not maintained at cryogenic temperatures between deformation and characterization.

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