Hardening of Nanoporous Au Induced by Exposure to Different Gaseous Environments

Giorgio Pia, Elisa Sogne, Andrea Falqui, Francesco Delogu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This work focuses on the mechanical behaviour of nanoporous Au samples alternately exposed to ozone and carbon dioxide. Nanoporous Au was fabricated by freely corroding the Ag70Au30 parent alloys prepared by mechanical alloying in the form of powder and subsequently compacted by cold pressing. Dealloying was performed in acidic solution, and conditions were suitably adjusted to obtain fine nanoporous Au structures with ligaments about 15 nm thick. Nanoporous Au samples with increasingly thicker ligaments, up to about 40 nm, were fabricated by annealing the pristine nanoporous Au structure for different time intervals at 473 K. For all of the samples, the cyclic variation of gaseous atmosphere results in a macroscopic strain variation due to the occurrence of surface oxidation and reduction processes. We show that the reiterated cyclic exposure to the different gases also induces the progressive hardening of nanoporous Au, which can be ascribed to irreversible strain contributions. For nanoporous Au samples with ligaments that are 15 nm thick, after 50 exposure cycles, the yield strength increases approximately from 49 MPa to 57 MPa. A systematic investigation on coarser nanoporous Au structures indicates that, with the same exposure cycles, the degree of hardening decreases with the ligament thickness.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2718
JournalMaterials (Basel, Switzerland)
Issue number8
StatePublished - Apr 7 2022

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2022-04-26
Acknowledgements: Financial support from Fondazione di Sardegna, projects ADVANCING (F.D.) and Nanoporous metals for structural applications: from structure to mechanical properties (G.P.), is gratefully acknowledged. This research was also supported by KAUST Baseline funding (A.F. and E.S.)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science


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