Advanced Alloys for Emerging Challenges

Joseph Mckeown | 21-ERD-037

Project Overview

Modern technology is enabled by materials. As technological needs have evolved, a larger and more diverse array of materials has been developed. Metal alloys have commanded an enormous space in this materials evolution, and alloy complexity has slowly increased to meet these escalating demands. However, the performance of metallic components degrades under extreme environments. While emerging national security concerns continue to create a critical and growing demand for alloys that meet performance metrics in extreme environments and can be rapidly designed, manufactured, and certified, the current design-to-deployment timescale for new alloys is on the order of decades.

In this project, development of a Materials Acceleration Platform (MAP) was initiated. Once fully developed, the MAP will be a unique, computationally guided and experimentally validated design framework, capable of rapid adaptation to emerging challenges requiring specific materials, properties, and processing routes. In this work, a thermodynamic database was developed for the refractory-element phase space comprised of {Mo, Nb, Ta, V, W}, to predict the phase stability and properties of refractory high entropy alloys (RHEAs), a new class of alloys that has demonstrated exceptional properties under extreme conditions. We are currently designing RHEAs with optimized yield stress and have formulated new models to describe physical mechanisms that underlie the exceptional properties of these materials. These efforts provide the groundwork for accelerating the discovery and deployment of advanced alloys.

Mission Impact

This project supports LLNL's core competency of Advanced Materials and Manufacturing. Advanced materials underpin Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory's (LLNL's) ability to deliver on its core missions with respect to both national security and global challenges, such as climate change. Rapid development and validation of new metallic alloys is essential to meet the demands of leading-edge technologies for national security. Our ability to design alloys on demand will provide enabling materials to support LLNL missions, including directed energy and space security, and the needs of external agencies, such as DoD (materials for hypersonics) and ARPA-E (materials for advancing high-temperature turbine efficiency). This research will provide a new capability for materials design, providing a framework that can be extended to other materials classes, fast-tracking the national security technological design loop to address emerging challenges. The project addresses critical workforce needs at LLNL through strategic hiring of new staff with strong backgrounds in metallurgy.

Publications, Presentations, and Patents

Turchi, P.E.A., V. Drchal, J. Kudrnovsky, and A. Perron. 2020. "Ab initio study of stability, local order, and phase diagram for a series of bcc-based transition metal alloys," Journal of Phase Equilibria and Diffusion 41: 737-755.

Tong, C., and A. Perron. 2021. "A prototype for the calculation and uncertainty quantification of phase diagrams for binary systems," LLNL Technical Report.

Laukkanen, A., T. Pinomaa, T. Andersson, T. Suhonen, M. Lindroos, A. Perron, J. Berry, J. McKeown, H. Henderson, and S. McCall. 2021. "Modeling strengthening and elevated temperature properties of single and polycrystalline refractory high entropy alloy microstructures." In TMS 2022 Annual Meeting and Exhibition.

Suhonen, T., M. Lindroos, A. Laukkanen, J. Lagerbom, J. Metsajoki, A. Perron, J. Berry, J. McKeown, S. McCall, and T. Pinomaa. 2021. "Powder bed fusion, characterization and testing of MoNbTaVW refractory high entropy alloy." In TMS 2022 Annual Meeting and Exhibition.

Pinomaa, T., M. Haapalehto, A. Perron, J. McKeown, S. McCall, H. Henderson, T. Suhonen, L. Wang, and A. Laukkanen. 2021. "An atomistic simulation study of rapid solidification in dilute Al-Cu and refractory HEA alloys." In TMS 2022 Annual Meeting and Exhibition.

Pinomaa, T., M. Lindroos, P. Jreidini, M. Haapalehto, K. Ammar, L. Wang, J. McKeown, J. Wiezorek, S. Forest, N. Provatas, and A. Laukkanen. 2021. "Formation of crystalline defects in rapid solidification." In TMS 2022 Annual Meeting and Exhibition.

Perron, A., J. Berry, B. Bocklund, R. Otis, A. Landa, C. Tong, A. Samanta, H. Henderson, Z. Sims, T. Voisin, V. Lordi, S. McCall, and J. McKeown. 2021. "CALPHAD database development and optimization of refractory HEAs." In 2nd World Congress on High Entropy Alloys (HEA 2021).

Perron, A., J. Berry, B. Bocklund, R. Otis, A. Landa, C. Tong, A. Samanta, H. Henderson, Z. Sims, T. Voisin, V. Lordi, S. McCall, and J. McKeown. 2021. "Exploring the vast refractory HEA composition space: CALPHAD database development and alloy optimization." In 6th World Congress on Integrated Computational Materials Engineering (ICME 2021).