Experiment-based modelling of grain boundary β-phase (Mg2Al3) evolution during sensitisation of aluminium alloy AA5083

R. Zhang, M. A. Steiner, S. R. Agnew, S. K. Kairy, C. H. J. Davies, N. Birbilis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


An empirical model for the evolution of β-phase (Mg2Al3) along grain boundaries in aluminium alloy AA5083 (Al-Mg-Mn) during isothermal exposures is proposed herein. Developing a quantitative understanding of grain boundary precipitation is important to interpreting intergranular corrosion and stress corrosion cracking in this alloy system. To date, complete ab initio models for grain boundary precipitation based upon fundamental principles of thermodynamics and kinetics are not available, despite the critical role that such precipitates play in dictating intergranular corrosion phenomena. Empirical models can therefore serve an important role in advancing the understanding of grain boundary precipitation kinetics, which is an approach applicable beyond the present context. High resolution scanning electron microscopy was to quantify the size and distribution of β-phase precipitates on Ga-embrittled intergranular fracture surfaces of AA5083. The results are compared with the degree of sensitisation (DoS) as judged by nitric acid mass loss testing (ASTM-G67-04), and discussed with models for sensitisation in 5xxx series Al-alloys. The work herein allows sensitisation to be quantified from an unambiguous microstructural perspective.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2961
Number of pages14
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Cite this