2010 Volume 51 Issue 2 Pages 209-213
Thermal stability of ultrafine-grained (UFG) structure of 99.9% pure copper produced by eight equal channel angular pressing (ECAP) passes was studied. The annealing experiments were conducted at 180°C in a tube furnace under argon as a covering gas. The dwell times were in the range of 10 min to 120 min. The electron backscattering diffraction (EBSD) analyses were performed before and after annealing at exactly the same area in order to quantify the degree of decomposition of the UFG structure. Definition of grain boundaries was based on the misorientation angle of 1°. More advanced analysis of the EBSD results based on a kernel average misorientation (KAM) parameter was performed. Inverse pole figure maps with included grain networks did not reveal any substantial changes of UFG microstructure due to annealing. Some shift in the KAM modus in comparison with the initial state was observed but its magnitude was found negligible. Also changes in texture were found to be minor. On the other hand the microhardness increases with increasing time of annealing.