University of Oulu

P. Kantanen, S. Anttila, P. Karjalainen, R. Latypova, M. Somani, A. Kaijalainen, J. Kömi, Microstructures and mechanical properties of three medium-Mn steels processed via quenching and partitioning as well as austenite reversion heat treatments, Materials Science and Engineering: A, Volume 847, 2022, 143341, ISSN 0921-5093,

Microstructures and mechanical properties of three medium-Mn steels processed via quenching and partitioning as well as austenite reversion heat treatments

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Author: Kantanen, P.1; Anttila, S.2; Karjalainen, P.1;
Organizations: 1Materials and Mechanical Engineering, CASR, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
2SSAB Europe Oy, Raahe, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 17.3 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2022
Publish Date: 2022-06-16


In order to establish the processing conditions to achieve the target of tensile strength of ∼1500 MPa with minimum retained austenite (RA) fraction of 10% in hot-rolled 3–4%Mn medium Mn steels, three hot-deformed steels with the base composition of Fe-0.3C–1Si-0.5Al (concentrations in wt.%) and variable contents of Mn (3 or 4 wt%), Ni (1 or 2 wt%), Mo (0.2 or 0.4 wt%) and V (0 or 0.2 wt%) were processed using both the quenching and partitioning (QP) and austenite reverse transformation (ART) treatments. Physical simulation experiments were carried out using small cylinders in a thermomechanical simulator and the differences in the amounts, morphology and stability of RA were established by using X-ray diffraction and electron probe microanalysis, besides standard material characterization techniques. Both processes provided relatively high fractions of austenite; up to 26 vol% using the QP route and up to 49 vol% by the ART treatment under specific conditions. These amounts were comparable to those predicted for the conditions of thermodynamic equilibrium using the ThermoCalc software. The stability of RA for various conditions was estimated in terms of the average carbon contents of the RA. In QP process RA had mostly blocky-like appearance while in ART process the majority of RA was lath-like shaped. The hardness measurements revealed that the level of hardness in the QP structures was higher than that of the ART samples, possibly affected by RA fraction but more obviously as a result of martensite tempered at relatively low temperatures in the QP and at high temperatures in the ART treated structures. Preliminary tensile properties were measured on selected laboratory hot-rolled samples and results analyzed based on RA characteristics. The preliminary results indicated that the target is achievable in the laboratory scale through both the processing routes.

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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: 847
Article number: 143341
DOI: 10.1016/j.msea.2022.143341
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 216 Materials engineering
Funding: This research has been conducted at the University of Oulu under the auspices of Intelligent Steel Applications (Grant # 7537/31/2018) and Fossil-free Steel Applications (Grant #5397/31/2001) programs, and the corresponding financial support from Business Finland and the companies participating in the program is gratefully acknowledged. Mr. Juha Uusitalo is sincerely thanked for meticulously conducting the Gleeble tests. A part of the work was carried out with the support of Center for Material Analysis, University of Oulu, Finland.
Copyright information: © 2022 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (