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Title: Microstructural characterization of low temperature plasma-nitrided 316L stainless steel surface with prior severe shot peening
Authors: Jayalakshmi, M.
Huilgol, P.
Bhat, B.R.
Bhat, K.U.
Issue Date: 2016
Citation: Materials and Design, 2016, Vol.108, , pp.448-454
Abstract: Surface nanocrystallization by severe deformation has proven beneficial as pre-treatment to plasma nitriding. It aids in achieving thicker nitride layers at lower temperatures thus making the process more economical. In austenitic stainless steels, severe deformation leads to formation of strain induced martensite on the surface while plasma nitriding alone forms expanded austenite. However, structural characteristics of surface layer of pre-deformed steel after plasma nitriding is still a matter of debate. In present study, 316L stainless steel was subjected to severe shot peening: followed by plasma nitriding at 400 C for 4 h. Characteristics of sample surface before and after treatment were analyzed by scanning electron microscopy, X-ray diffractometry and transmission electron microscopy techniques. Results showed that, this duplex treatment leads to formation of about 45 ?m thick nitride layer; without CrN precipitation. This is significantly high compared to reported data considering the temperature and duration of nitriding treatment employed. Selected area electron diffraction pattern from topmost surface confirmed the co-existence of austenite and martensite while subsurface layer was predominantly consisting of lath martensite. This indicates that major phase in the nitrided layer is martensitic in nature and nitrogen supersaturation leads to transformation of small fraction of martensite to expanded austenite. 2016 Elsevier Ltd
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