The purpose of this project is two-fold: (i) to perform advanced characterization at the submicrometer scale of the mechanical behaviour of several types of materials (nanocomposites, metallic glasses, intermetallics, thin films, etc.) and (ii) to use nanoindentation to develop innovative applications for engineering purposes. Concerning the first part, the in-situ nanomechanical characterization of materials will be used to shed light into the mechanisms governing their macroscopic mechanical response. Important fundamental aspects of nanomechanical testing will be also investigated, such as strain-rate effects or the so-called indentation size effect, i.e., the dependence of hardness on the applied indentation load. Secondly, the depth-sensing nanoindentation technique will be also used to locally induce, in a controlled manner, structural changes in the materials which, in turn, will result in modified physical (e.g. magnetic or mechanical ) properties. We will exploit the possibility of using nanoindentation to generate periodic arrays of submicrometric ferromagnetic dots at the surface of a non-magnetic material. Also, this technique will be used to investigate deformation-induced phase transformations in different types of materials as well as structural changes in bulk metallic glasses (e.g. nanocrystallization), which can result in enhanced ductility. Thus, we will benefit from the active modification of materials at the submicrometer scale to develop non-conventional application of nanoindentation.
|Effective start/end date||1/10/07 → 30/09/10|