Precipitate characterisation of an advanced high-strength low-alloy (HSLA) steel using atom probe tomography

Timokhina, Ilana, Hodgson, Peter, Ringer, S, Zheng, R. and Pereloma, E. 2007, Precipitate characterisation of an advanced high-strength low-alloy (HSLA) steel using atom probe tomography, Scripta materialia, vol. 56, no. 7, pp. 601-604, doi: 10.1016/j.scriptamat.2006.12.018.

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Title Precipitate characterisation of an advanced high-strength low-alloy (HSLA) steel using atom probe tomography
Author(s) Timokhina, IlanaORCID iD for Timokhina, Ilana orcid.org/0000-0003-1989-0835
Hodgson, Peter
Ringer, S
Zheng, R.
Pereloma, E.
Journal name Scripta materialia
Volume number 56
Issue number 7
Start page 601
End page 604
Publisher Elsevier
Place of publication New York, N.Y.
Publication date 2007-04
ISSN 1359-6462
1872-8456
Keyword(s) advanced HSLA steel
three-dimensional atom probe
nanoscale particles
interface precipitation
Summary Increased fuel economy, combined with the need for the improved safety has generated the development of new hot-rolled high-strength low-alloy (HSLA) and multiphase steels such as dual-phase or transformation-induced plasticity steels with improved ductility without sacrificing strength and crash resistance. However, the modern multiphase steels with good strength-ductility balance showed deteriorated stretch-flangeability due to the stress concentration region between the soft ferrite and hard martensite phases [1]. Ferritic, hot-rolled steels can provide good local elongation and, in turn, good stretch-flangeability [2]. However, conventional HSLA ferritic steels only have a tensile strength of not, vert, similar600 MPa, while steels for the automotive industry are now required to have a high tensile strength of not, vert, similar780 MPa, with excellent elongation and stretch-flangeability [1]. This level of strength and stretch-flangeability can only be achieved by precipitation hardening of the ferrite matrix with very fine precipitates and by ferrite grain refinement. It has been suggested that Mo [3] and Ti [4] should be added to form carbides and decrease the coiling temperature to 650 °C since only a low precipitation temperature can provide the precipitation refinement [4]. These particles appeared to be (Ti, Mo)C, with a cubic lattice and a parameter of 0.433 nm, and they were aligned in rows [4]. It was reported [4] that the formation of these very fine carbides led to an increase in strength of not, vert, similar300 MPa. However, the detailed analysis of these particles has not been performed to date due to their nanoscale size. The aim of this work was to carry out a detailed investigation using atom probe tomography (APT) of precipitates formed in hot-rolled low-carbon steel containing additions Ti and Mo.

The investigated low-carbon steel, containing Fe–0.1C–1.24Mn–0.03Si–0.11Cr–0.11Mo–0.09Ti–0.091Al at.%, was produced by hot rolling. The processing route has been described in detail elsewhere [5] European Patent Application, 1616970 A1, 18.01.2006.[5]. The microstructure was characterised by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) on a Philips CM 20, operated at 200 kV using thin foil and carbon replica techniques. Qualitative energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDXS) was used to analyse the chemical composition of particles. The atomic level of particle characterisation was performed at the University of Sydney using a local electrode atom probe [6]. APT was carried out using a pulse repetition rate of 200 kHz and a 20% pulse fraction on the sample with temperature of 80 K. The extent of solute-enriched regions (radius of gyration) and the local solute concentrations in these regions were estimated using the maximum separation envelope method with a grid spacing of 0.1 nm [7]. A maximum separation distance between the atoms of interest of dmax = 1 nm was used.

The microstructure of the steel consisted of two types of fine ferrite grains: (i) small recrystallised grains with an average grain size of 1.4 ± 0.2 μm; and (ii) grains with a high dislocation density (5.8 ± 1.4 × 1014 m−2) and an average grain size of 1.9 ± 0.1 μm in thickness and 2.7 ± 0.1 μm in length (Fig. 1a). Some grains with high dislocation density displayed an elongated shape with Widmanstätten side plates and also the formation of cells and subgrains (Fig. 1a). The volume fraction of recrystallised grains was 34 ± 8%.


Notes Available online 23 January 2007.
Language eng
DOI 10.1016/j.scriptamat.2006.12.018
Field of Research 091207 Metals and Alloy Materials
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2007, Acta Materialia Inc.
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30007205

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Centre for Material and Fibre Innovation
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