Deformation behavior and mechanisms in defect-scarce Au nanowires

Plastic deformation in initially defect-free Au nanowires has to be initiated by the nucleation of dislocations at the free surfaces into a perfect crystal. This dislocation nucleation process occurs at stress levels close to the theoretical shear strength of the single crystal. The thermally-activation of dislocation nucleation and the formation of defect structures during plastic flow is investigated in conjunction with the effect of defined extrinsic stress concentrations on the deformation behaviour.

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