Ames Laboratory; Physics and Astronomy
Ames Laboratory, Physics and Astronomy
Physical Review Letters
Relaxation processes significantly influence the properties of glass materials. However, understanding their specific origins is difficult; even more challenging is to forecast them theoretically. In this study, using microseconds molecular dynamics simulations together with an accurate many-body interaction potential, we predict that an Al90Sm10 metallic glass would have complex relaxation behaviors: In addition to the main (α) relaxation, the glass (i) shows a pronounced secondary (β) relaxation at cryogenic temperatures and (ii) exhibits an anomalous relaxation process (α2) accompanying α relaxation. Both of the predictions are verified by experiments. Computational simulations reveal the microscopic origins of relaxation processes: while the pronounced β relaxation is attributed to the abundance of stringlike cooperative atomic rearrangements, the anomalous α2 process is found to correlate with the decoupling of the faster motions of Al with slower Sm atoms. The combination of simulations and experiments represents a first glimpse of what may become a predictive routine and integral step for glass physics.
DOE Contract Number(s)
51601064; AC02-07CH11358; 2018KFYXKJC009
Iowa State University Digital Repository, Ames IA (United States)