Strengthening of HSLA steels by cool deformation
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In microalloyed steels, the refinement of ferrite grains together with a controlled amount of precipitation has key roles in the mechanical properties improvement. Applying small amounts of deformation, at very low hot working temperatures (i.e. coiling temperature), in the ferrite region (i.e. cool deformation) has an appreciable strengthening effect via controlling the final microstructure of the steel. One of the microstructural effects is thought to be the much finer and more uniformly dispersed precipitates in the steel matrix. In the present study, the effects of Nb and Cu on mechanical properties and corresponding microstructures in steels with different levels of cool deformation are investigated. The mechanical properties of the samples were determined using the shear punch test and the microstructure was examined by scanning and transmission electron microscopy. Thermodynamic simulations with FactSage were done to further analyze the precipitation possibility of different elements. It has been found that these alloying elements respond very well to cool deformation, with the strength being highest in steels containing both Nb and Cu. However, a cool deformation effect in the non-Nb and Cu bearing steel is also observed. In all cases, it was confirmed that precipitation plays a key role in the effect of cool deformation, with much of the precipitation taking place dynamically. Nevertheless, static processes also seem to have a measurable effect on room temperature properties. Even low amounts of copper (e.g. ∼0.4 wt%) can contribute to strengthening of the steel. The Cu addition is found to affect the mechanical properties by affecting the precipitation and growth of Nb compounds.
CitationFatehi, A. [et al.]. Strengthening of HSLA steels by cool deformation. "Materials science and engineering A. Structural materials properties microstructure and processing", 2010, vol. 527, p. 4233-4240.