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  1. Free, publicly-accessible full text available October 1, 2024
  2. The formation of isothermal ω phase precipitates and its influence on subsequent fine-scale α precipitation is investigated in a metastable β-titanium alloy, Ti-10V-2Fe-3Al. Atom-probe tomography and high-resolution transmission electron microscopy reveal that the rejection of Al, a potent α stabilizer, from the growing isothermal ω precipitates at 330°C, aids in the formation of α precipitates. Additionally, the presence of α/ω and α/β interfaces conclusively establish that these α precipitates form at the β/ω interface. Interestingly, the local Al pile-up at this interface results in a substantially higher than equilibrium Al content within the α precipitates at the early stages of formation. This can be rationalized based on a novel three-phase β+ω+α metastable equilibrium at a lower annealing temperature (330°C, below the ω solvus). Subsequent annealing at a higher temperature (600°C, above the ω solvus), dissolves the ω precipitates and re-establishes the two-phase β+α equilibrium in concurrence with solution thermodynamic predictions. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available September 1, 2024
  3. Abstract The fall armyworm ( Spodoptera frugiperda ) is a highly polyphagous lepidopteran pest of relevant food and fiber staple crops. In the Americas, transgenic corn and cotton producing insecticidal proteins from the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) have controlled and reduced the damage caused by S. frugiperda . However, cases of field-evolved S. frugiperda resistance to Bt corn producing the Cry1F insecticidal protein have been documented in North and South America. When characterized, field resistance to Cry1F is linked to insertions and mutations resulting in a modified or truncated ABC transporter subfamily C2 ( SfABCC2 ) protein that serves as Cry1F receptor in susceptible S. frugiperda . In this work, we present detection of a large genomic deletion (~ 8 kb) affecting the SfABCC2 and an ABC transporter gene subfamily 3 –like gene ( SfABCC3 ) as linked to resistance to Cry1F corn in a S . frugiperda strain from Florida (FL39). Monitoring for this genomic deletion using a discriminatory PCR reaction in field-collected S. frugiperda moths detected individuals carrying this allele in Florida, but not in surrounding states. This is the first report of a large genomic deletion being involved in resistance to a Bt insecticidal protein. 
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  4. null (Ed.)
    Abstract For decades the poor mechanical properties of Ti alloys were attributed to the intrinsic brittleness of the hexagonal ω-phase that has fewer than 5-independent slip systems. We contradict this conventional wisdom by coupling first-principles and cluster expansion calculations with experiments. We show that the elastic properties of the ω-phase can be systematically varied as a function of its composition to enhance both the ductility and strength of the Ti-alloy. Studies with five prototypical β-stabilizer solutes (Nb, Ta, V, Mo, and W) show that increasing β-stabilizer concentration destabilizes the ω-phase, in agreement with experiments. The Young’s modulus of ω-phase also decreased at larger concentration of β-stabilizers. Within the region of ω-phase stability, addition of Nb, Ta, and V (Group-V elements) decreased Young’s modulus more steeply compared to Mo and W (Group-VI elements) additions. The higher values of Young’s modulus of Ti–W and Ti–Mo binaries is related to the stronger stabilization of ω-phase due to the higher number of valence electrons. Density of states (DOS) calculations also revealed a stronger covalent bonding in the ω-phase compared to a metallic bonding in β-phase, and indicate that alloying is a promising route to enhance the ω-phase’s ductility. Overall, the mechanical properties of ω-phase predicted by our calculations agree well with the available experiments. Importantly, our study reveals that ω precipitates are not intrinsically embrittling and detrimental, and that we can create Ti-alloys with both good ductility and strength by tailoring ω precipitates' composition instead of completely eliminating them. 
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  5. null (Ed.)