A Zr52.5Cu18Ni14.5Al10Ti5 bulk metallic glass toughened with a commercially available spring-shaped steel wire has been produced by centrifugal casting. The addition of the steel spring significantly affects shear band nucleation and propagation through the blockage, deflection and multiplication of shear bands at the glass–spring interface. As a result of the more homogeneous distribution of the plastic strain, the room temperature plasticity increases from 0.9% for the monolitic glass to about 4% for the glass–spring composite. Given the low volume fraction of the spring used in the composite (4.2 vol.%), these results demonstrate the extreme effectiveness of the steel spring for improving the plasticity of the metallic glass.

This paper was originally published in Materials and Design 59, 241-245.

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