The chosen technical paper talks about the effect of the different heat treatments on three properties namely the microstructures present, toughness, and wear behavior.
One kind of a stainless steel alloy which is the G-X 10CrNiMoNb 18-10 Cast Austenitic Stainless Steel was used in this experiment.Currently, the alloy does not have a lot of uses. It is, in fact, difficult to look-up the uses of this alloy. However, according to the technical paper, it is used for exhaust system parts for maritime industry. Investigating the effects of different treatment is a good initiative on the part of the researchers since it will open new ideas as to where this alloy can be used. It was mentioned that heat treatment was done, for this particular experiment. Heat treatment is a process in which the physical and chemical properties altered in order to obtain more desirable characteristics of the material, it must be noted that the material should not change its shape when undergoing the process 1. In this experiment, the researchers specifically used tempering and quenching to heat treat the alloy.
Tempering is done by heating at a temperature below the critical point in order to increase toughness 2 while quenching involves heating of the material followed by a rapid cooling by immersion in a medium like water or oil to allow hardening 3. A change in microstructure will come after heat treatment and looking at these microstructures could help in determining certain properties. The existence of different types of microstructures and how much of it exists could mean different things.Toughness is a material property which measures the ability to absorb energy before fracture. To achieve high toughness, a combination of high strength and high ductility must be present. Variables that influence the toughness of the material are strain rate, temperature, and notch effect 4.
In order to test how long the material will last with its achieved property, the wear rate is calculated. Wear is the damage to the surface caused by the loss of material due to the relative motion between the contacting surfaces. Wear rate is calculated by dividing the wear volume by the product of the normal load and the sliding distance 5.