Bulk Metallic Glasses
Rapid quenching techniques have been successfully applied since long time for the preparation of metallic glasses in ribbon form. Only in the recent years, the research activity addressed towards the synthesis of bulk metallic glasses (BMG), in form of ingots with a few millimetres in thickness. These materials can be obtained by casting techniques only for selected alloy compositions, characterised by a particularly high glass-forming tendency. Bulk amorphous alloys are characterised by a low modulus of elasticity and high yielding stress. The usual idea is that amorphous alloys undergo work softening and that deformation is concentrated in shear bands, which might be subjected to geometrical constraints, resulting in a substantial increase in hardness and wear resistance. The mechanical properties can be further improved by crystallisation. In fact, shear bands movement can be contrasted by incorporating a second phase in the material, which may be produced directly by controlled crystallisation. Soft magnetic properties have been obtained in Fe-based systems and they are strongly related to small variations in the microstructure, ranging from a fully amorphous phase to nanocrystalline phases with different crystal size. The high thermal stability of bulk metallic glasses makes possible the compression and shaping processes in the temperature range between glass transition and crystallisation. Aim of this paper is to present recent results on glass formation and properties of bulk metallic glasses with various compositions. Examples will be reported on Zr, Fe, Mg and Pd-based materials, focussing on mechanical and magnetic properties.
Marcello Cabibbo and Stefano Spigarelli
M. Baricco et al., "Bulk Metallic Glasses", Materials Science Forum, Vols. 604-605, pp. 229-238, 2009