Design of high-strength martensitic steels by novel mixed-metal nanoprecipitates for high toughness and suppressed hydrogen embrittlement

Masoud Moshtaghi, Emad Maawad, Artenis Bendo, Andreas Krause, Juraj Todt, Jozef Keckes, Mahdieh Safyari

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To obtain a fundamental understanding of mechanisms of hydrogen embrittlement (HE) and its prevention in advanced high-strength steels containing novel nanoscale mixed-metal precipitates, it is necessary to study local microstructure, H trapping, and crack path with new multiscale experimental and simulation approach. Spatially resolved hydrogen mapping via SKPFM is used together with investigation of the crack path using high-resolution EBSD and HMPT, and global trapping behavior of the alloys by TDS. These results are combined with newly introduced method to elucidate real-time distribution of hydrogen in the alloy using high-energy synchrotron X-ray diffraction (HES-XRD). Mixed-metal precipitates improves HE resistance of the alloy, due to nature of the trapping sites, e.g. irreversible H-trapping by carbon vacancies inside novel nanoprecipitates and high total length of PAGBs. This is because of lower possibility of build-up of critical local hydrogen content at PAGBs for intergranular hydrogen-assisted cracking due to hydrogen-enhanced decohesion mechanism. Less weakly trapped hydrogen also reduces frequency of dislocation activation and enhanced dislocation slip in {0 1 1} slip plane due to hydrogen-enhanced localized plasticity in regions with affinity for transgranular hydrogen-assisted cracking at lower local hydrogen content. Direct evidence of carbon vacancies in novel nanoprecipitates is observed for the first time via HAADF-STEM.
Original languageEnglish
Article number112323
Number of pages15
JournalMaterials & design
Issue numberOctober
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 14 Sept 2023

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