Thermodynamics of an austenitic stainless steel (AISI-348) under in situ TEM heavy ion irradiation
Research output: Contribution to journal › Article › Research › peer-review
External Organisational units
- University of Huddersfield
- Oak Ridge National Laboratory
- Department of Metallurgical and Materials Engineering
The stability of the face-centred cubic austenite (γ-Fe) phase in a commercial stainless steel (AISI-348) was investigated through in situ transmission electron microscopy (TEM) with heavy ion irradiation at 1073 K up to a fluence of 1.31017 ionscm−2 (corresponding to a dose of 46 dpa). The γ-Fe phase was observed to decompose at a fluence of around 7.81015 ionscm−2 (3 dpa) when a new phase nucleated and grew upon increasing irradiation dose. Scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM) with energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) spectroscopy and multivariate statistical analysis (MVSA) were used to characterise the irradiated specimens. The combination of such experimental techniques with calculated equilibrium phase diagrams using the CALPHAD method led to the conclusion that the new phase formed upon irradiation is the body-centred cubic Cr-rich phase. At the nanoscale, precipitation of M23C6 (τ-carbide) was also observed. The results indicate that ion irradiation can assist the austenitic stainless steel to reach a non-equilibrium state similar to a calculated equilibrium state observed at lower temperatures.