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Disclination mediated dynamic recrystallization in metals at low temperature

Recrystallization is one of the most important physical phenomena in condensed matter that has been utilized for materials processing for thousands of years in human history. It is generally believed that recrystallization is thermally activated and a minimum temperature must be achieved for the necessary atomic mechanisms to occur. Here, using atomistic simulations, we report a new mechanism of dynamic recrystallization that can operate at temperature as low as T = 10 K in metals during deformation. In contrast to previously proposed dislocation-based models, this mechanism relies on the generation of disclination quadrupoles, which are special defects that form during deformation when the grain boundary migration is restricted by structural defects such as triple junctions, cracks or obstacles. This mechanism offers an alternative explanation for the grain refinement in metals during severe plastic deformation at cryogenic temperature and may suggest a new method to tailor the microstructure in general crystalline materials.


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