Novel method for refinement of retained austenite in micro/nano-structured bainitic steels

Hu, F.; Wu, K. M.; Wan, X. L.; Rodionova, I.; Shirzadi, A. A. and Zhang, F. C. (2017). Novel method for refinement of retained austenite in micro/nano-structured bainitic steels. Materials Science and Technology, 33(11) pp. 1360–1365.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/02670836.2017.1291165

Abstract

A comparative study was conducted to assess the effects of two different heat treatments on the amount and morphology of the retained austenite in a micro/nano-structured bainitic steel. The heat treatments used in this work were two-stage bainitic transformation and bainitic-partitioning transformation. Both methods resulted in the generation of a multi-phase microstructure containing nanoscale bainitic ferrite, and/or fresh martensitic phases and much finer retained austenite. Both heat treatments were verified to be effective in refining the retained austenite in micro/nano-structured bainite and increasing the hardness. However, the bainitic transformation followed by partitioning cycle was proved to be a more viable approach than the two-stage bainitic transformation due to much shorter processing time, i.e. ∼2 h compared to ∼4 day, respectively.

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