We report for the first time the shear-induced local amorphization of boron suboxide subjected to nanoindentation. The amorphous bands have a width of ∼1-3 nm and a length of 200-300 nm along the (01̄11) crystal plane. We show direct experimental evidence that the amorphous shear bands of boron suboxide are driven from the coalescence of dislocation loops under high shear stresses. These observations provide insights into the microscopic deformation and failure of high-strength and lightweight ceramics.
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