It has recently been revealed that high-density pre-existing hydrogen micropores, formed during production processes, exhibit premature growth and coalescence under external loading at room temperature, thereby inducing ductile fracture. This process is incidentally supplemented by the well-established ductile fracture mechanism based on particle damage. It is reasonable to assume that the pre-existing hydrogen micropores may also contribute to damage evolution at high temperatures. In the present study, synchrotron X-ray microtomography was applied to the in situ observation of deformation and fracture in Al-Mg alloys at a high temperature. High-density hydrogen micropores were observed in the alloys. Flow localization controlled deformation through the mechanism of solute drag creep. A combined effect of grain boundary sliding and heterogeneous nucleation on particles was also confirmed to accelerate the growth of pre-existing hydrogen micropores and cavities. Although continuous nucleation occurred together with the growth of pre-existing hydrogen micropores, the effects of the pre-existing hydrogen micropores, especially those located on grain boundaries, were predominant in the overall damage evolution. It seemed likely that supersaturated hydrogen in the aluminum alloys might also make an appreciable contribution to cavitation during high-temperature loading.
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