Microstructure of a Creep-Resistant 10 Pct Chromium Steel Containing 250 ppm Boron
Journal article, 2011
The microstructure of a trial martensitic chromium steel containing a high content of boron (250 ppm) was characterized in detail in the as-tempered and aged conditions. This steel has a similar composition and heat treatment as the TAF steel that still is unsurpassed in creep strength among all 9 to 12 pct chromium steels. Characterization was performed by using scanning electron microscopy, energy-filtered transmission electron microscopy, secondary ion mass spectroscopy, and atom probe tomography. Focus was placed on investigating different types of precipitates that play a key role in improving the creep resistance of these steels. The low tempering temperature of 963 K (690 A degrees C) is enough for the precipitation of the full volume fraction of both MX and M23C6. A high boron content, more than 1 at. pct, was found in M23C6 precipitates and they grow slowly during aging. The high boron level in the steel results in metal borides rather than BN with the approximate formula (Mo0.66Cr0.34)(2)(Fe0.75V0.25)B-2. Two families of MX precipitates were found, one at lath boundaries about 35 nm in size and one dense inside the laths, only 5 to 15 nm in size.