Sie sind auf Seite 1von 4
Materials Science and Engineering A 483–484 (2008) 325–328 Mechanical behavior of CrMo steel with tempered

Materials Science and Engineering A 483–484 (2008) 325–328

Science and Engineering A 483–484 (2008) 325–328 Mechanical behavior of CrMo steel with tempered martensite

Mechanical behavior of CrMo steel with tempered martensite and ferrite–bainite–martensite microstructure

A. Abdollah-Zadeh , A. Salemi, H. Assadi

Department of Materials Engineering, Tarbiat Modares University, P.O. Box 14115-143, Tehran, Iran

Received 6 June 2006; received in revised form 28 September 2006; accepted 5 December 2006

Abstract

This study is concerned with a correlation between the microstructure and mechanical properties of 42CrMo4 steel, with two different microstruc- tures. Quench tempering and step quenching heat treatments produced tempered martensite and ferrite–bainite–martensite (FBM) microstructures, respectively. Tensile test results indicated a yield-drop effect in FBM microstructure with ferritic matrix. This was attributed to dislocation genera- tion in ferrite phase during bainitic and martensitic transformations. Fractographic investigations indicated transgranular cleavage and microvoid in FBM and tempered martensite microstructures, respectively. This can be attributed to high density of interphase boundary in FBM microstructure and carbide formation in tempered martensite microstructure. © 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Keywords: 42CrMo4 steel microstructure; Ferrite–bainite–martensite; Cleavage fracture

1. Introduction

The influence of microstructure on mechanical properties in steels has been a subject of considerable research interest for many years [1–3]. The microstructure of conventional steels often makes it impossible to obtain concurrently good ductil- ity, toughness and high strength. Evolution of newer steel with improved combinations of strength, ductility and toughness has led to the emergence of a series of mixed or multi-phase struc- tures in which Advanced High Strength (AHS), represents a distinguished class [3–5]. Some applications, especially trans- portations require economical high strength steel with good ductility and formability. The AHS steels were developed to satisfy an increasing need, primarily in the automobile industry, for new high strength steels that permit weight reduction without dramatically increasing costs [6–9]. The mechanical properties of mixed microstructure in high strength steels have been widely investigated. Many researchers reported a good combination of strength, toughness and ductility for mixed microstructure

[6–8,10,11].

Sanctis and Lovicu [10] developed a model to examine the effect of the soft and hard phases on the tensile property

Corresponding author. Tel.: +98 21 88005040; fax: +98 21 88005040. E-mail address: zadeh@modares.ac.ir (A. Abdollah-Zadeh).

0921-5093/$ – see front matter © 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

doi:10.1016/j.msea.2006.12.179

for mixed microstructure in high strength steels. They found that a simple model based on the law of mixtures may result inaccuracy in predicting mechanical strength, when applied to product having a large difference in the amount of a hard constituent. Matlock and Krauss [11] also investigated the effect of microstructure on mechanical properties in micro-alloyed, mul- tiphase steels. They found that tensile properties and fracture toughness of ferrite–bainite–martensite (FBM) structure of micro-alloyed steels are inferior to those of conventional steels. Sankaran et al. [6–8] developed a multiphase microstructure by thermomechanical processing in micro-alloyed steels in order to produce a mixed structure. They reported that the proof and tensile strengths of FMB microstructure are increase by 17% and 20%, respectively, compared with the values corresponding to the conventional microstructure. In all the previous studies made on multiphase steels, both thermomechanical and heat treatments have been used to pro- duce FBM microstructures. However, it is of interest to see, if mechanical behavior could be improved upon by only step quenching treatment. As of now, no literature is available on the improved mechanical properties by the step quenching heat treatment processes. The objective of this investigation is to study the correlation between the microstructure and mechani- cal behavior of FBM and tempered martensite microstructure in 42CrMo4 steel.

326

A. Abdollah-Zadeh et al. / Materials Science and Engineering A 483–484 (2008) 325–328

Table 1 The heat treatment cycles and microstructures

Specimen

Heat treatment cycle

 

Microstructure

FBM-1

850 C, 850 C, 850 C, 850 C, 850 C, 850 C, 850 C,

1 h 650 C, 1 h 650 C, 1 h 650 C, 1 h 650 C, 1 h 650 C, 1 h 650 C,

4 min 430 C, 8 min 430 C,

4 min w.q 4 min w.q

25%Ferrite–bainite–martensite

FBM-2

31%Ferrite–bainite–martensite

FBM-3

12 min 430 C, 4 min w.q

39%Ferrite–bainite–martensite

FBM-4

4 min 400 C, 8 min 400 C,

4 min w.q 4 min w.q

25%Ferrite–bainite–martensite

FBM-5

31%Ferrite–bainite–martensite

FBM-6

12 min 400 C, 4 min w.q

39%Ferrite–bainite–martensite

M-T

1 h o.q 650 C, 1 h

 

Tempered martensite

2. Experimental methods

The material used in this investigation was 42CrMo steel with the composition (wt.%): Fe–0.35C–1.10Cr–0.23Mo– 0.52Mn–0.36Si–0.014P–0.006S. The heat treatment cycles were designed so as to produce significantly different microstructures. These included one tempered martensite microstructure and six FBM microstructures. Quench tempering and step quenching heat treatments produced a tempered marten- site and an equiaxed ferrite–bainite–martensite microstructure, respectively. The detailed heat treatments schedule is given in Table 1. For optical microscopy, the samples were etched in a 4% nital. Furthermore, for color tint etching, the sam- ples were etched in the solution of 4% picral and sodium metabisulfite. The ambient temperature tensile and Charpy V-Notch tests were made according to the specification DIN 50115 and DIN 50125, respectively. Fracture surfaces of Charpy specimens were

analyzed by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) to determine the fracture mechanisms.

3. Results and discussion

The microstructures of the quench tempered and step quenched specimens are shown in Fig. 1a through d, respec- tively. As can be seen in these figures, the microstructure of the quench tempered specimen was tempered martensite, whereas the microstructure of the steel in the step quenching condition was ferrite (white areas) and mixture of bainite and marten- site (black areas). In the color tint etching, ferrite, bainite and martensite were observed in azure blue, brown and white colors, respectively. As can be seen in Fig. 1b, the matrix is embedded in the bainite and martensite hard phases, in which ferrite is dis- tributed in hard phase matrix. This kind of microstructure was observed in the FBM-1 specimen, which were held in the two phase (austenite + ferrite) region for 4 min. By increasing the

(austenite + ferrite) region for 4 min. By increasing the Fig. 1. Optical micrographs (4% nital

Fig. 1. Optical micrographs (4% nital etched) of the microstructures, (a) quench tempered microstructure (M-T), (b) isothermally transformed at 650 C for 4 min (FBM-1) and (c and d) isothermally transformed at 650 C for 8 (FBM-2) and 12 min (FBM-3), respectively.

 

A. Abdollah-Zadeh et al. / Materials Science and Engineering A 483–484 (2008) 325–328

327

Table 2 Mechanical properties of the tempered martensite and FBM microstructures

 

Specimen

Tensile strength (MPa)

Yield strength (MPa)

Elongation (%)

Reduction of area (%)

CVN (J)

FBM-1

742 ± 2 675 ± 5 633 ± 6 862 ± 3 712 ± 6 670 ± 1 940 ± 10

605 ± 5

 

25

±

1

27

15 ± 1 39 ± 2 76 ± 5

FBM-2

530

±

6

37

±

1

54 ± 8 65 ± 2 24 ± 1 56 ± 2 63 ± 2 31 ± 0.5

FBM-3

475

±

3

45

±

3

FBM-4

802 ± 12

25

±

0.3

10

FBM-5

545

±

5

38

±

1

47 ± 3 75 ± 5 80 ± 1

FBM-6

520

±

6

40

±

0.05

M-T

800 ± 5

55

±

4

time, from 4 min to 8 and 12 min, the microstructure includes ferrite matrix, in which the bainite and martensite surrounded by ferrite phase (see, e.g. Fig. 1c and d). This can be explained based on the phase transformation of steel during intercritical annealing treatment, where the ferrite volume fraction increases from 25% to 39% as the annealing treatment time increases from 4 to 12 min (see, e.g. Table 1). The tensile and Charpy impact test data of differently heat treated specimens are given in Table 2. The yield and tensile strengths of FBM-1 specimen are 742 and 605 MPa, while for specimen FBM-2 are 675, 530 MPa, and for specimen FBM- 3, are 633 and 475 MPa, respectively. It is seen that the yield and tensile strength of FBM-2 and FBM-3 specimens are equiv- alent and far from FBM-1. This difference was also observed in the elongation, reduction of area and impact energy. In FBM-1 specimen, the mixture of bainite and martensite hard phases forms the matrix of microstructure, in which ferrite phase is distributed in it. Then the mechanical property of bainite–martensite mixture will determine mechanical proper- ties. On the other hand, in FBM-2 and FBM-3 specimens, in which bainite and martensite phases surrounded by ferritic soft matrix, mechanical properties of ferrite will determine the mechanical properties of the investigated steel. Such interpret- ing would be true for differences of tensile, yield strengths and ductility quantities in FBM-4 with FBM-5 and FBM-6 specimens. With increasing the bainitic transformation temperature from 400 to 430 C, yield and tensile strengths of FBM-4, FBM-5 and FBM-6 specimens increase compared with those of in FBM-1, FBM-2 and FBM-3, as shown in Table 2. Decreasing the strength in this steel may be related to the decreasing dislocation den- sity in bainite phase with increasing the bainitic transformation temperature from 400 to 430 C [12]. By comparing the tempered martensite microstructure with that of FBM microstructure, it can be concluded that the mechanical properties of tempered martensite microstructure are generally favorable to mechanical properties of FBM microstructure. The tensile results indicated that continuous yielding was observed in the stress–strain curve for all tempered martensite specimens. This continuity was also observed in FBM-1 and FBM-4 specimens. However, in this study, besides continuous yielding during transition from elastic to plastic deformation, discontinues yielding was also observed on the stress–strain curves for all specimens with ferritic matrix microstructure.

The occurrence of discontinuous yielding phenomenon can be rationalized with the existing theories, as pinning of dis- locations by solute atoms [13,14], formation of short range order region near dislocation [15], electrical charge of solute atoms and depositing on dislocations [16,17]. According to these theories, solute atoms immobilize dislocations and suf- ficiently highly applied stress required to loosen dislocation from their pinning points. From this rationalization, the yield point is indicative of the applied stress required to mobilize these pinned dislocations. According to other theories [18], the occurrence of discontinuous yield phenomenon may be understood by dislocation generation, which entails a sud- den increase in dislocation density. It is a known fact that mobile dislocation density has a very important effect on yielding phenomenon of metallic materials and does not stay constant during plastic deformation. The formation of marten- site and bainite from austenite phase in FBM microstructure generates a copious number of dislocations in the adjacent ferrite grain. It is clearly known that, plastic deformation of specimens during tensile test generates a number of dislo- cations in FBM microstructure. Due to the pinning of this deformation generated dislocations with prior dislocations, mobile dislocations density decrease during plastic deforma- tion. Decreasing the mobile dislocations causes discontinuous yielding on the stress–strain curve in the FBM specimens with ferritic matrix. Charpy impact fractography results are shown in Fig. 2. In the tempered martensite microstructure, the fracture sur- face included small and large dimples (Fig. 2a). The origin of these dimples can be from the carbides produced in the tempering of martensite during the tempering treatment [19]. Fractographic investigations showed fracture mechanism of transgranular cleavage in the FBM microstructure (Fig. 2b and c), in the surfaces. Bright facet observed in all FBM speci- mens, which are characteristic of cleavage fracture. The reason of appearing these surfaces in steel can be related to some factors that are: the Fe carbide colonies and Fe carbides [20,21], spher- ical inclusion of manganese sulfide and secondary particles, especially titanium carbide [22]. If Fe carbide, sulfide inclusion or secondary partials are cause of bright facet in cleavage frac- ture, presence of dimples in starting bright facet location will be unavoidable [20–22]. In microscopic investigation any dimple in starting bright facet was not observed (see, e.g. Fig. 2c). Thus these surfaces appear in steel due to the formation of interphase boundary.

328

A. Abdollah-Zadeh et al. / Materials Science and Engineering A 483–484 (2008) 325–328

Science and Engineering A 483–484 (2008) 325–328 Fig. 2. SEM images of (a) dimples on the

Fig. 2. SEM images of (a) dimples on the surface of the quench tempered specimen, (b) fracture surface of step quenched specimens exhibited a typi- cal transgranular cleavage mode and (c) cleavage step began at the boundary at top form a sharply defined river pattern. Crack propagation was in direction of arrow.

4. Conclusions

The mechanical properties of tempered martensite, is more favorable than those of FBM microstructure. Decreasing bainite

transformation temperature from 430 to 400 C increases, the yield and tensile strength but decreases impact energy. Increase in the yield and tensile strength and the related reduction of impact energy are results of increasing bainite dislocation den- sity. Yield-drop effect was observed in FBM microstructure with ferritic matrix. This effect can also be attributed to disloca- tion generation in ferrite phase during bainitic and martensitic transformations. Fractography of the Charpy impact specimens indi- cates ductile and transgranular fracture mechanisms in quench tempered and step quenched specimens, respectively. This can be attributed to interphase boundary in FBM microstructure and carbide formation in tempered martensite microstructure.

References

[1] Y. Tomita, T. Okawa, Mater. Sci. Eng. A 172 (1993) 145–

151.

[2] D. Liu, B. Bai, H. Fang, Mater. Sci. Eng. A 371 (2004) 40–44. [3] S. Maropoulos, N. Ridley, J. Kechagias, Eng. Frac. Mech. 71 (2004)

1695–1704.

[4] S. Sivaprasad, S. Tarafder, V.R. Ranganath, Mater. Sci. Eng. A 284 (2000)

195–201.

[5] S. Dhua, Mater. Metall. Trans. A 34 (2003) 2493–2494. [6] S. Sankaran, V.S. Sarma, K. Padmanabhan, Mater. Sci. Eng. A 362 (2003)

249–256.

[7] S. Sankaran, V.S. Sarma, K. Padmanabhan, Mater. Sci. Eng. A 345 (2003)

328–335.

[8] S. Sankaran, V.S. Sarma, K. Padmanabhan, Scripta Mater. 49 (2003)

503–508.

[9] S. Jitsukawa, W. Shiro, J. Nucl. Mater. 329–333 (2004) 39–

49.

[10] M. Sanctis, G.F. Lovicu, 42th MNSP Conf. Proc., vol. 37, ISS, Italy, 2000, pp. 615–620.

[11] D.K. Matlock, G. Krauss, Mater. Sci. Eng. A 165 (1995) 1–8. [12] H. Matsuda, H.K.D.H. Bhadeshia, Proc. R. Soc. London 460 (2004)

1707–1722.

[13] A. Cottrel, B.A. Bilby, Proc. Phys. Soc. London 62 (1949) 49–

62.

[14] H. Suzuki, Symposium on the Relation between the Structure and

Mechanical Properties of Metals, vol. 15, NPL, London, 1963, pp. 517–

525.

[15] K.S.B. Rose, S.G. Gloverj, Acta Metall. 14 (1966) 1505–1516. [16] A.H. Cottrel, S.C. Hunter, Phil. Mag. 44 (1953) 1064–1070.

[17] G.W. Kelly, Prog. Mater. Sci. 10 (1963) 149–155. [18] X.L. Cai, J. Feng, Metall. Trans. A 16 (1985) 1405–1415. [19] E.K. Tschegg, S. Suresh, Metall. Trans. A 19 (1988) 3035–

3044.

[20] S. Druee, Fracture Mechanics 22th Symposium, ASTM, Philadelphia, 1992, pp. 682–706.

[21] X.Z. Zhang, J.F. Knott, Acta Mater. 48 (2000) 2135–2146. [22] Rosenfield, D.K. Shetty, Eng. Frac. Mech. 17 (1983) 461–470.