Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Materials Science and Engineering

First Advisor

Alan M. Russell


Gold matrix D&barbelow;eformation-processed M&barbelow;etal M&barbelow;etal C&barbelow;omposites (DMMC) have been developed that have better strength and conductivity than conventional gold alloys. However, DMMC possess metastable two-phase microstructures, and their strength and conductivity decrease after prolonged exposure to elevated temperatures. The kinetics of the transformation from the metastable two-phase microstructure to the equilibrium single-phase solid solution is of interest.;This document describes a study of the elevated temperature stability of Au DMMC's and the relationship between microstructure and resistivity of three compositions: Au-7 vol %Ag, Au-14 vol %Ag, and Au-vol 7%Pt. DMMC samples were prepared by a powder metallurgy technique and mechanical processes. The smallest final diameter of these wires was 120 mum. Avrami and Arrhenius relations were used to evaluate the kinetic transformation. The extensive deformation used to produce these composites reshaped the initially equi-axed powder particles into a nanofilamentary composite. Electrical resistivity measurements were used to determine the degree of transformation from the initial metastable nano-filamentary composite to the equilibrium solid solution condition. These measurements indicated that this transformation in Au-14 at%Ag, Au-7 at %Ag Au and Au-7 at %Pt DMMC wires proceeded with activation energies of 141, 156, and 167 kJ/mol, respectively.;It is thought that these empirically determined activation energies differ from those determined in single crystal, planar interface Au-Ag and Au-Pt diffusion couples due to chemical potential, surface curvature, and strain effects. The DMMC systems reach the equilibrium solid solution condition faster than single crystal, planar interface systems for two reasons: (1) far more defects (dislocations, grain boundaries, vacancies from non-conservative dislocation motion, etc.) are present in the Au-Ag and Au-Pt DMMC composites, and (2) the small radius of curvature of the Ag and Pt filaments increases the chemical potential for diffusion in the DMMC.



Digital Repository @ Iowa State University,

Copyright Owner

Kageeporn Wongpreedee



Proquest ID


File Format


File Size

87 pages

Included in

Metallurgy Commons