MRS Bulletin

Technical Feature

Technical Feature

Three-Dimensional X-Ray Diffraction Microscopy Using High-Energy X-Rays

Henning F. Poulsen, Dorte Juul Jensen and Gavin B.M. Vaughan

Abstract

Three-dimensional x-ray diffraction (3DXRD) microscopy is a tool for fast and nondestructive characterization of the individual grains, subgrains, and domains inside bulk materials. The method is based on diffraction with very penetrating hard x-rays (E ≥ 50 keV), enabling 3D studies of millimeter-to-centimeter-thick specimens.The position, volume, orientation, and elastic and plastic strain can be derived for hundreds of grains simultaneously. Furthermore, by applying novel reconstruction methods, 3D maps of the grain boundaries can be generated. The 3DXRD microscope in use at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility in Grenoble, France, has a spatial resolution of ∼5 μm and can detect grains as small as 150 nm. The technique enables, for the first time, dynamic studies of the individual grains within polycrystalline materials. In this article, some fundamental materials science applications of 3DXRD are reviewed: studies of nucleation and growth kinetics during recrystallization, recovery, and phase transformations, as well as studies of polycrystal deformation.

Keywords

  • high-energy x-rays;
  • grain mapping;
  • grain dynamics;
  • three-dimensional x-ray diffraction microscopy

Henning F. Poulsen is a senior research scientist in the Materials Research Department at Risø National Laboratory in Roskilde, Denmark. His current research interests are in the development of diffraction and imaging techniques based on high-energy x-rays and their application to materials science and engineering, including areas such as plastic deformation and nucleation and growth phenomena. Poulsen earned his PhD degree in physics from the University of Copenhagen, Denmark, in 1991. Before joining Risø, he spent three years as a postdoctoral researcher at the HASYLAB synchrotron facility in Hamburg, Germany. He has authored or co-authored more than 100 publications. Poulsen can be reached at the Materials Research Department, Risø National Laboratory, Dk-4000 Roskilde, Denmark; tel. 45-4677-5739; fax 45-4677-5758, and e-mail henning.friis.poulsen@risoe.dk.

Dorte Juul Jensen is head of the Center for Fundamental Research on Metal Structures in Four Dimensions at Risø National Laboratory in Roskilde, Denmark. The primary research goal for the center is to significantly advance the knowledge and understanding of metal structures. Experimental characterizations, including three-dimensional x-ray diffraction (3DXRD) microscopy and advanced electron microscopy techniques, as well as theoretical analysis and modeling, are essential to reaching this goal.

Juul Jensen earned her PhD degree in materials science from the Danish Technical University in 1983 and her Dr. Techn. degree from the same institution in 1997. She has authored or co-authored more than 200 publications and is an editor for Scripta Materialia.

Juul Jensen can be reached at the Materials Research Department, Risø National Laboratory, Dk-4000 Roskilde, Denmark; tel. 45-4677-5804, fax 45-4677-5758, and e-mail dorte.juul.jensen@risoe.dk.

Gavin B.M. Vaughan has scientific responsibility for beamline ID11 at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF) in Grenoble, France. Vaughan received his PhD degree in physics from the University of Pennsylvania in 1993 and joined the ESRF in 1995 following a postdoctoral fellowship at the Université Joseph Fourier in Grenoble. His research interests include order/disorder phenomena, phase transitions, and the refinement and solution of the structure of powders and micro-crystals. His present research emphasis is in the extension and development of experimental techniques and robust quantitative data-analysis procedures for data taken during rapid in situ measurements from inhomogeneous and poorly crystallized materials. He has more than 75 publications. Vaughan can be reached at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF), BP 220, F-38043 Grenoble, France; tel. 33-(0)47688-2341, fax 33-(0)47688-2707, and e-mail vaughan@esrf.fr.

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