Topology-generating interfacial pattern formation during liquid metal dealloying

Pierre Antoine Geslin*, Ian McCue, Bernard Gaskey, Jonah Erlebacher, Alain Karma

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

119 Scopus citations

Abstract

Liquid metal dealloying has emerged as a novel technique to produce topologically complex nanoporous and nanocomposite structures with ultra-high interfacial area and other unique properties relevant for diverse material applications. This process is empirically known to require the selective dissolution of one element of a multicomponent solid alloy into a liquid metal to obtain desirable structures. However, how structures form is not known. Here we demonstrate, using mesoscale phase-field modelling and experiments, that nano/microstructural pattern formation during dealloying results from the interplay of (i) interfacial spinodal decomposition, forming compositional domain structures enriched in the immiscible element, and (ii) diffusion-coupled growth of the enriched solid phase and the liquid phase into the alloy. We highlight how those two basic mechanisms interact to yield a rich variety of topologically disconnected and connected structures. Moreover, we deduce scaling laws governing microstructural length scales and dealloying kinetics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number8887
JournalNature communications
Volume6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 19 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Physics and Astronomy
  • General Chemistry
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology

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