Modeling morphology evolution and densification during solid-state sintering via kinetic Monte Carlo simulation

Shaohua Chen, Yaopengxiao Xu, Yang Jiao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Microstructure control is an important subject in solid-state sintering and plays a crucial role in determining post-sintering material properties, such as strength, toughness and density, to name but a few. The preponderance of existing numerical sintering simulations model the morphology evolution and densification process driven by surface energy minimization by either dilating the particles to be sintered or using the vacancy annihilation model. Here, we develop a novel kinetic Monte Carlo model to model morphology evolution and densification during free sintering. Specifically, we derive analytically a heterogeneous densification rate of the sintering system by considering sintering stress induced mass transport. The densification of the system is achieved by modeling the sintering stress induced mass transfer via applying effective particle displacement and grain boundary migration with an efficient two-step iterative interfacial energy minimization procedure. Coarsening is also considered in the later stages of the simulations. We show that our model can accurately capture the diffusion-induced evolution of particle morphology, including neck formation and growth, as well as realistically reproduce the overall densification of the sintered material. The computationally obtained dynamic density evolution curves for both two-particle sintering and many-particle material sintering are found to be in excellent agreement with the corresponding experimental master sintering curves. Our model can be utilized to control a variety of structural and physical properties of the sintered materials, such as the pore size and final material density.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number085003
JournalModelling and Simulation in Materials Science and Engineering
Issue number8
StatePublished - Oct 13 2016


  • interface diffusion
  • kinetic Monte Carlo
  • microstructure evolution
  • sintering
  • sintering stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Computer Science Applications


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