Historically, dealloying, the selective dissolution of elemental components from an alloy, has been studied most intensively for binary noble-metal alloys such as Ag-Au, Cu-Au and Zn-Cu. There have been three primary 'mechanisms' proposed to explain ambient temperature dealloying in such systems: 'simultaneous' dissolution of both components/redeposition of the more-noble constituent, lattice diffusion-supported by a di-vacancy mechanism of the more reactive component to the alloy/electrolyte interface and percolation dissolution. Here, we briefly discuss each of these mechanisms and the corresponding dealloyed morphology. In order to examine the connection between a mechanism and morphology we examined dealloying of Mg from Mg-Cd alloys under conditions for which vacancy-mediated lattice diffusion occurs at significant rates. Depending on alloy composition and dealloying rate, we observed either 'negative' dendrites or bi-continuous structures, each of which is directly associated with the operation of a particular mechanism. Our findings should be useful to researchers employing dealloying to obtain particular types nanostructured features for a variety of applications.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Surfaces, Coatings and Films
- Materials Chemistry