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Hydrogen embrittlement through the formation of low-energy dislocation nanostructures in nanoprecipitation-strengthened steels

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Article numbereabb6152
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>11/11/2020
<mark>Journal</mark>Science Advances
Issue number46
Number of pages9
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Hydrogen embrittlement is shown to proceed through a previously unidentified mechanism. Upon ingress to the microstructure, hydrogen promotes the formation of low-energy dislocation nanostructures. These are characterized by cell patterns whose misorientation increases with strain, which concomitantly attracts further hydrogen up to a critical amount inducing failure. The appearance of the failure zone resembles the "fish eye"associated to inclusions as stress concentrators, a commonly accepted cause for failure. It is shown that the actual crack initiation is the dislocation nanostructure and its associated strain partitioning.