Tension–compression asymmetry is a notable feature of plasticity in body-centred cubic (bcc) single crystals. Recent experiments reveal striking differences in the plasticity of bcc nanopillars for tension and compression. Here we present results from molecular dynamics simulations of nanopillars of bcc Fe in tension and compression. We find that a totally different deformation mechanism applies in each case: dislocation glide in compression and twinning in tension. This difference explains experimentally observed asymmetry in the nanopillar morphology.
- Molecular dynamics
- DEFORMATION MECHANISMS