Refractory alloying additions on the thermal stability and mechanical properties of high-entropy alloys

B. X. Cao, T. Yang, L. Fan, J. H. Luan, Z. B. Jiao, C. T. Liu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)


In this study, alloying effects of Mo and W refractory elements on the microstructural evolution of high-entropy alloys (HEAs) were systematically studied. High-density L12-type precipitates formed during the isothermal treatment at 800 °C. Alloying additions of Mo and W displayed different partitioning behaviors between the matrix and precipitate phases, with Mo partitioning to the matrix phase (KMo = 0.45) and W partitioning to the precipitates (Kw = 1.52) in the 1.5 at.% Mo and 1.5 at.% W alloyed HEA, respectively. A reversal in the partition of W back to the matrix (Kw = 0.95) was identified for the combined Mo and W alloying. It was demonstrated that W not only destabilized the Heusler phase at grain boundaries but also increased the volume fraction of the precipitates. In addition, lattice misfit was significantly reduced after alloying with these refractory additions. The coarsening kinetics was also quantitatively described according to the modified-Lifshitz-Slyozov-Wagner model. The coarsening rate constant for the HEAs was significantly reduced as comparison with that for Ni- and Co-based superalloys, implying an improved thermal stability of HEAs. Moreover, a reduced interfacial energy together with inherently small diffusivity of the refractory elements attributed to the improved thermal stability. Our findings show the remarkable thermal stability for HEAs and the potential for HEAs to be developed as new high-temperature structural materials.

Original languageEnglish
Article number140020
JournalMaterials Science and Engineering A
Publication statusPublished - 21 Oct 2020


  • Coarsening behavior
  • Lattice misfit
  • Precipitation-hardened high-entropy alloys
  • Refractory elements
  • Thermal stability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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