Nanocrystalline soft magnetic Fe-M-B (M = Zr, Hf, Nb) alloys and their applications

A. Makino, T. Hatanai, A. Inoue, T. Masumoto

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

164 Citations (Scopus)


This paper reviews our results on the development of a new type of soft magnetic material with high saturation magnetic flux density (Bs) above 1.5 T as well as excellent soft magnetic properties. A mostly single bcc structure composed of α-Fe grains with about 10-20 nm in size surrounded by a small amount of an intergranular amorphous layer was obtained by crystallization of amorphous alloys prepared by melt-spinning technique. The typical nanocrystalline bcc Fe90Zr7B3, Fe89Hf7B4 and Fe84Nb7B9 ternary alloys subjected to the optimum annealing exhibit high Bs above 1.5 T as well as high effective permeability (μe) at 1 kHz above 20 000. Excellent soft magnetic properties of the nanocrystalline Fe-M-B based alloys can be obtained by the decrease in the bcc grain size, magnetostriction (λ) and the increase in Tc of the intergranular amorphous phase by optimizing the crystallization process, chemical composition and adding small amounts of elements. For example, the improved FeZrNbBCu alloy shows the high μe of 160000 combined with the high Bs of 1.57 T. This excellent μe is comparable to those of nanocrystalline Fe73.5Si13.5B9Nb3Cu1 and the zero-magnetostrictive Co based amorphous alloys, and the high Bs is comparable to those of the Fe based amorphous alloys with rather good soft magnetic properties. The excellent characteristics of a power transformer, a common mode choke coil, a pulse-transformer and a flux gate magnetic detector made of 'NANOPERM™' were found in agreement with its very low core losses, sufficient thermal stability and low stress-sensibility of magnetic properties. The nanocrystalline Fe-M-B based alloys 'NANOPERM™' is therefore expected to be used for many kinds of magnetic parts and devices.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)594-602
Number of pages9
JournalMaterials Science and Engineering A
Publication statusPublished - 1997 Jun 15
Externally publishedYes


  • Core loss
  • Malt-spun ribbon
  • Nanocrystalline
  • Saturation magnetic flux density
  • Soft magnetic property
  • Zero-magnetostriction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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