Evolution of Microstructure during Isothermal Treatments of a Duplex-Austenitic 0.66C11.4Mn.9.9Al Low-Density Forging Steel and Effect on the Mechanical Properties
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Low density steels
In the last decades, low-density steels for forging have increasing interest in the automotive industry, and good mechanical properties are required for their real application. This paper describes the results obtained for a 0.66C11.4Mn9.9Al duplex austenitic low-density steel after applying a set of isothermal treatments at different combinations of time and temperature, aimed to promote kappa carbide precipitation, and improve the mechanical properties obtained with a water quenching treatment. The effects of the different isothermal treatments on the microstructure and on the mechanical properties have been analyzed and compared to those obtained from a quenching heat treatment. We found that isothermal treatments in the range temperature between 550–750 °C promoted the profuse precipitation of coarse kappa carbides at grain boundaries, which dramatically reduced the ductility of the alloy, whereas a traditional quenching treatment resulted in a better combination of ductility ...