University of Oulu

Ghosh, S., Bibhanshu, N., Suwas, S., & Chatterjee, K. (2021). Surface mechanical attrition treatment of additively manufactured 316L stainless steel yields gradient nanostructure with superior strength and ductility. Materials Science and Engineering: A, 820, 141540.

Surface mechanical attrition treatment of additively manufactured 316L stainless steel yields gradient nanostructure with superior strength and ductility

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Author: Ghosh, Sumit1,2; Bibhanshu, Nitish3,2; Suwas, Satyam2;
Organizations: 1Materials and Mechanical Engineering, Centre for Advanced Steels Research, University of Oulu, 90014 Oulun yliopisto, Finland
2Department of Materials Engineering, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, 560012, Karnataka, India
3Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN-37831, USA
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 16.1 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2021
Publish Date: 2023-06-06


Surface severe plastic deformation (S²PD) of additively manufactured/three-dimensional (3D) printed metallic parts is gaining increased attention as a post-manufacturing operation to enhance the material performance in a wide variety of applications. Surface mechanical attrition treatment (SMAT) is an S²PD technique that can yield a nanostructured surface layer induced by compressive stresses and work hardening. In the present study, SMAT was performed on 316L (austenitic) stainless steel (SS) processed by selective laser melting (SLM), and the consequent effects on mechanical response were investigated. The underlying mechanisms of microstructural evolution leading to the formation of nanocrystalline grains resulting from SMAT in SLM 316L SS are elucidated. The interactions between twins and deformation bands act as potential sites for impeding the movement of dislocations, which in turn leads to the formation of stacking faults, twinning, and occasionally transform to a different crystal structure. Twin-twin and/or twin-deformation band intersections sub-divide the matrix grains into smaller cells or low-angle disoriented blocks, which result in the formation of low-angle grain boundaries and finally in nanocrystallization at the surface. The size of nanocrystalline grains increases progressively with depth from the surface to micrometer size grains in bulk. The gradient nanostructure in the additively manufactured alloy after SMAT imparts an unusual combination of strength and ductility that markedly exceeds that of conventional, bulk nanostructured, or even high-performance 316L SS (containing nanoscale deformation twins embedded in submicron-sized austenitic grains obtained by dynamic plastic deformation processes). Analytical models revealed that strengthening results from a combination of grain boundaries and dislocations. The results of the present investigation pave the way for engineering high-performance SS for a variety of engineering applications.

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Series: Materials science & engineering. A, Structural materials: properties, microstructure and processing
ISSN: 0921-5093
ISSN-E: 1873-4936
ISSN-L: 0921-5093
Volume: 820
Article number: 141540
DOI: 10.1016/j.msea.2021.141540
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 216 Materials engineering
Funding: The authors gratefully acknowledge the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Government of India (Project DST/NM/NB/2018/119).
Copyright information: © 2021 Elsevier B.V. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license