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Polycrystalline specimens of a copper-beryllium alloy (1.8 per cent Be) were bent and exposed to an ammonia atmosphere. Two lots of polycrystalline material of similar chemical composition but of different grain size and distribution of segregates were investigated. Specimens were subjected to different values of plastic deformation and humidity conditions. Plastic deformation appears to be an essential factor in stress corrosion fracture. The importance of humidity conditions was emphasized by the results obtained. Both modes of fracture, transcrystalline and intercrystalline, were observed. It was found that the distribution of segregates determines which of these two modes of fracture will occur. A mechanism of stress corrosion fracture in a copper-beryllium alloy is proposed.
stress corrosion, corrosion, copper-beryllium alloys, ammonia atmosphere, plastic deformation, fracture, humidity
Sylwestrowicz, W. D.
Member of technical staff, Bell Telephone Laboratories, Inc., Murray Hill, N. J.