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Los Alamos National LaboratoryCenter for Integrated Nanotechnologies
Helping you understand, create, and characterize nanomaterials

2020 Highlights

A selection of CINT science highlights from staff and user research.

CINT Contact  

  • Khalid Hattar
  • In-Situ Characterization and Nanomechanics Thrust
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Turning Brittle Ceramic into Silly Putty in a TEM

Scientific Achievement

To explore materials response to extreme environments, a new approach has been developed at CINT combining laser heating and quantitative mechanical testing during in-situ Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM).

Significance and Impact

This new techniques now permits detailed observation of creep deformation and failure mechanisms active at ultrahigh temperatures, showing the impacts of grain growth, phase transitions, surface diffusion, and interface diffusion.

Research Details

The image shows in-situ laser-heating and compression TEM images of zirconium-oxide pillars and the associated stress-strain response.
  • Temperatures greater than 2000°C can be achieved during in-situ TEM observation.
  • The image shows in-situ laser-heating and compression TEM images of zirconium-oxide pillars and the associated stress-strain response at elevated temperatures.
  • Grain boundary energy dominates brittle fracture at 77% of melt temperature.

Publication: Grosso R, Muccillo EN, Muche DN, Jawaharram GS, Barr CM, Monterrosa AM, Castro RH, Hattar K, Dillon SJ. In situ Transmission Electron Microscopy for Ultrahigh Temperature Mechanical Testing of ZrO2. Nano Letters. 2020 Jan 13. [DOI: 10.1021/acs.nanolett.9b04205]

Funding: Support from National Science Foundation under Grant DMR 1922867 is acknowledged by S.J.D. R.G. and E.M. gratefully acknowledge FAPESP (2016/06205-1 and 2017/25501-3), CAPES (Finance code 001), and CNPq (305889/2018-4) for financial support. D.M. acknowledges CNPq (236631/2012-8). Support from the Army Research Office Grants W911NF1810361 and W911NF1710026 are acknowledged by R.C. This work was carried out in part in the Frederick Seitz Materials Research Laboratory Central Research Facilities, University of Illinois at Urbana−Champaign. C.M.B. and K.H. were supported by the DOE-BES Materials Science and Engineering Division under FWP 15013170. This work was performed, in part, at the Center for Integrated Nanotechnologies, an Office of Science User Facility operated for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science. Sandia National Laboratories is a multimission laboratory managed and operated by National Technology and Engineering Solutions of Sandia, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Honeywell International, Inc., for the U.S. DOE’s National Nuclear Security Administration under contract DE-NA-0003525.