Environmentally assisted cracking (EAC), an intricate interaction between the environment, stress state, and material, results in brittle fracture of otherwise ductile materials. EAC covers a broad range of failure modes in materials, such as stress corrosion cracking (SCC), corrosion fatigue, hydrogen embrittlement, sulfide stress cracking, hydrogen enhanced fatigue, irradiation induced SCC, to name a few. All different forms of EAC have been studied extensively, and, for a relatively long time, generating a vast body of knowledge.
We are presently experiencing the complete transformation of the alloy development and manufacturing cycles, which are transitioning from the traditional trial-and-error approach to a new knowledge-based methodology. Thus, the scientific and engineering communities require a fundamental understanding of the mechanisms involved in EAC-related phenomena. Likewise, new processing techniques, like additive manufacturing, are becoming mainstream. The new manufacturing methods could lead to alloys with entirely different microstructures and compositional variations and, consequently, unknown EAC behavior.
At the same time, the ever-growing demand of the energy, automotive, and aerospace sectors has fueled the development of new high strength alloys with complex microstructures and chemistries, prone to EAC.
The examples above boldly illustrate the necessity of interdisciplinary and multiscale research to increase the understanding of the mechanisms leading to environmental cracking in high-performing alloys. Modern techniques and approaches, including in situ testing and high-resolution analysis and characterization tools, provide an entirely new perspective for the examination pf the various forms of EAC.
We are planning a Special Issue of Metals (ISSN 2075-4701), an Open Access metallurgy journal, on the latest research on EAC of advanced alloys. We kindly invite all members of the materials and corrosion communities to submit their best work for consideration in this special issue. The deadline for manuscript submissions is 31 December, 2017. For more information and for manuscript submission details please visit the EAC special issue home page or contact me.
Prof. Dr. Afrooz Barnoush