We report the discovery of Al34Ni9Fe2, the first natural known periodic crystalline approximant to decagonite (Al71Ni24Fe5), a natural quasicrystal composed of a periodic stack of planes with quasiperiodic atomic order and ten-fold symmetry. The new mineral has been approved by the International Mineralogical Association (IMA 2018-038) and officially named proxidecagonite, which derives from its identity to periodic approximant of decagonite. Both decagonite and proxidecagonite were found in fragments from the Khatyrka meteorite. Proxidecagonite is the first natural quasicrystal approximant to be found in the Al-Ni-Fe system. Within this system, the decagonal quasicrystal phase has been reported to transform at ~940 °C to Al13(Fe,Ni)4, Al3(Fe,Ni)2and the liquid phase, and between 800 and 850 °C to Al13(Fe,Ni)4, Al3(Fe,Ni) and Al3(Fe,Ni)2. The fact that proxidecagonite has not been observed in the laboratory before and formed in a meteorite exposed to high pressures and temperatures during impact-induced shocks suggests that it might be a thermodynamically stable compound at high pressure. The most prominent structural motifs are pseudo-pentagonal symmetry subunits, such as pentagonal bipyramids, that share edges and corners with trigonal bipyramids and which maximize shortest Ni–Al over Ni–Ni contacts.
Forming metallurgical phases has a critical impact on the performance of dissimilar materials joints. Here, we shed light on the forming mechanism of equilibrium and non-equilibrium intermetallic compounds (IMCs) in dissimilar aluminum/steel joints with respect to processing history (e.g., the pressure and temperature profiles) and chemical composition, where the knowledge of free energy and atomic diffusion in the Al–Fe system was taken from first-principles phonon calculations and data available in the literature. We found that the metastable and ductile (judged by the presently predicted elastic constants) Al6Fe is a pressure (
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