We elucidate the microstructural evolution in MgB2 wires fabricated at two different temperatures by the internal Mg diffusion (IMD) method via multiple-scale microstructural observations. The critical current (Ic) of MgB2 wire was enhanced by the IMD method; however, the Ic of MgB2 was not sufficiently high to allow its practical applications. To prepare MgB2 by the IMD method, molten Mg is required to infiltrate the gaps between the B grains and penetrate each B grain. Here, we suggest that controlling the infiltration and penetration behaviors of Mg are key to enhancing the Ic of MgB2 fabricated by the IMD method. One reason for the decrease in Ic is the existence of residual B grains in the MgB2 crystalline region, which has an area fraction of 25% even in the MgB2 wire exhibiting the highest Ic. The amount of residual B grains, which formed due to the insufficient penetration distance of Mg atoms in the B grain, decreased after high-temperature treatment. However, the microstructure of the MgB2 wire fabricated at a temperature higher than the melting point of Mg was non-uniform because Mg infiltrated the gap between the B grains rapidly and non-uniformly. Thus, optimization of heat treatment temperature can effectively control the infiltration and penetration of Mg in the B grains, yielding uniform microstructures.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Mechanics of Materials
- Mechanical Engineering
- Metals and Alloys
- Materials Chemistry