Oxide glasses are an integral part of the modern world, but their usefulness can be limited by their characteristic brittleness at room temperature. We show show that amorphous aluminum oxide can permanently deform without fracture at room temperature and high strain rate by a viscous creep mechanism. These thin-films can reach flow stress at room temperature and can flow plastically up to a total elongation of 100%, provided that the material is dense and free of geometrical flaws. Our study demonstrates a much higher ductility for an amorphous oxide at low temperature than previous observations. This discovery may facilitate the realization of damage-tolerant glass materials that contribute in new ways, with the potential to improve the mechanical resistance and reliability of applications such as electronic devices and batteries (E.J. Frankberg et al. Science 2019). Follow up studies confirm that the available plasticity mechanisms can be scalable to thermodynamic bulk scale by using microcompression and large scale atomistic simulations.
13 Dec 2021
14th Pacific Rim Conference on Ceramic and Glass Technology (PACRIM 14) including Glass & Optical Materials Division 2021 Annual Meeting (GOMD 2021)