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A variational multiscale constitutive model for nanocrystalline materials

Gürses, Ercan
This paper presents a variational multi-scale constitutive model in the finite deformation regime capable of capturing the mechanical behavior of nanocrystalline (nc) fcc metals. The nc-material is modeled as a two-phase material consisting of a grain interior phase and a grain boundary effected zone (GBAZ). A rate-independent isotropic porous plasticity model is employed to describe the GBAZ, whereas a crystal-plasticity model which accounts for the transition from partial dislocation to full dislocation mediated plasticity is employed for the grain interior. The constitutive models of both phases are formulated in a small strain framework and extended to finite deformation by use of logarithmic and exponential mappings. Assuming the rule of mixtures, the overall behavior of a given grain is obtained via volume averaging. The scale transition from a single grain to a polycrystal is achieved by Taylor-type homogenization where a log-normal grain size distribution is assumed. It is shown that the proposed model is able to capture the inverse Hall-Perch effect, i.e., loss of strength with grain size refinement. Finally, the predictive capability of the model is validated against experimental results on nanocrystalline copper and nickel.