Co-Authors: Michael Feuerbacher, Carsten Thomas, Julien P. A. Makongo, Stefan Hoffmann, Wilder Carrillo-Cabrera, Raul Cardoso, Yuri Grin, Guido Kreiner, Jean-Marc Joubert, Thomas Schenk, Joseph Gastaldi, Henri Nguyen-Thi, Nathalie Mangelinck-Noël, Bernard Billia, Patricia Donnadieu, Aleksandra Czyrska-Filemonowicz, Anna Zielinska-Lipiec, Beata Dubiel, Thomas Weber, Philippe Schaub, Günter Krauss, Volker Gramlich, Jeppe Christensen, Sven Lidin, Daniel Fredrickson, Marek Mihalkovic, Wieslawa Sikora, Janusz Malinowski, Stefan Brühne, Thomas Proffen, Wolf Assmus, Marc de Boissieu, Francoise Bley, Jean-Luis Chemin, Jürgen Schreuer
Abstract. The Al−Mg phase diagram has been reinvestigated in the vicinity of the stability range of the Samson phase, β-Mg2Al3 (cF1168). For the composition Mg 38.5 Al 61.5, this cubic phase, space group Fd-3m (no 227), a = 28.242(1) Å, V = 22526(2) Å3, undergoes at 214 °C a first-order phase transition to rhombohedral β′-Mg2Al3(hR293), a = 19.968(1) Å, c = 48.9114(8) Å, V = 16889(2) Å3, (i.e. 22519 Å3 for the equivalent cubic unit cell) space group R3m (no 160), a subgroup of index four of Fd-3m. The structure of the β-phase has been redetermined at ambient temperature as well as in situ at 400 °C. It essentially agrees with Samson's model, even in most of the many partially occupied and split positions. The structure of β′-Mg2Al3is closely related to that of the β-phase. Its atomic sites can be derived from those of the β-phase by group-theoretical considerations. The main difference between the two structures is that all atomic sites are fully occupied in case of the β′-phase. The reciprocal space, Bragg as well as diffuse scattering, has been explored as function of temperature and the β- to β′-phase transition was studied in detail. The microstructures of both phases have been analyzed by electron microscopy and X-ray topography showing them highly defective. Finally, the thermal expansion coefficients and elastic parameters have been determined. Their values are somewhere in between those of Al and Mg.
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