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Published November 16, 2009 | Published
Journal Article Open

Dynamical and quasistatic structural relaxation paths in Pd_(40)Ni_(40)P_(20) glass


By sequential heat treatment of a Pd_(40)Ni_(40)P_(20) metallic glass at temperatures and durations for which α-relaxation is not possible, dynamic, and quasistatic relaxation paths below the glass transition are identified via ex situ ultrasonic measurements following each heat treatment. The dynamic relaxation paths are associated with hopping between nonequilibrium potential energy states of the glass, while the quasistatic relaxation path is associated with reversible β-relaxation events toward quasiequilibrium states. These quasiequilibrium states are identified with secondary potential energy minima that exist within the inherent energy minimum of the glass, thereby supporting the concept of the sub-basin/metabasin organization of the potential-energy landscape.

Additional Information

© 2009 American Institute of Physics. Received 28 August 2009; accepted 29 October 2009; published online 19 November 2009. Financial support is acknowledged by the DFG-SFB 602 and Sa 337/10-1 Leibniz-Program as well as the MRSEC Program of the National Science Foundation under Award No. DMR-0520565.

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