In situ micro tensile testing of He+2 ion irradiated and implanted single crystal nickel film

Ashley Reichardt, Mihail Ionescu, Joel Davis, Lyndon Edwards, R. P. Harrison, Peter Hosemann, Dhriti Bhattacharyya

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72 Citations (Scopus)


The effect of ion irradiation on the tensile properties of pure Ni single crystals was investigated using an in situ micro-mechanical testing device inside a scanning electron microscope. A 12.8 μm-thick Ni film with {0 0 1} plane normal was irradiated with 6 MeV He+2 ions to peak damage of 10 and 19 displacements per atom (dpa). Micro-tensile samples were fabricated from the specimens parallel to the plane of the film using a focused ion beam (FIB) instrument, and tested in tension along [1 0 0] direction, up to fracture. The peak strength increased from ∼230 MPa for the unirradiated material to about 370 MPa and 500 MPa for the 10 dpa and 19 dpa samples respectively, while the ductility decreased with increasing dose. The surface near the peak damage regions fractured in a brittle manner, while the regions with smaller dose underwent significant plastic deformation. Slip bands extended to the peak-damage zone in the sample with a dose of 19 dpa, but did not propagate further. Transmission electron microscopy confirmed the stopping of the slip bands at the peak-damage region, just before the high He concentration region with voids or bubbles. By removing the peak damage region and the He bubble region with FIB, it was possible to attain propagation of slip bands through the entire remaining thickness of the sample. This material removal also made it possible to calculate the irradiation hardening in the region with peak hardness - thus enabling the separation of hardening effects in the high and low damage regions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)147-154
Number of pages8
JournalActa Materialia
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • In situ micro-mechanical testing
  • Ion irradiation
  • Irradiation hardening
  • SEM
  • TEM

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