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Hydrogen Embrittlement in Super Duplex Stainless Steels


In super duplex stainless steels (SDSSs), both austenite and ferrite are susceptible to hydrogen embrittlement, however there is a lack of understanding into the effect of hydrogen in each phase. In this study, in neutron diffraction was applied on hydrogen-charged (H-charged) samples to investigate the hydrogen embrittlement behaviour in super duplex stainless steels. The result reveals that austenite maintains good plasticity during tensile testing, whilst a loss of it is realised in ferrite. Fractography analysis reveals the diffusion of hydrogen induced a brittle-to-ductile transition from the sample surface towards the centre; hydrogen embrittlement vanishes as the specimen’s centre is approached, while it is demonstrated to disappear first in austenite but not in ferrite. This transition can be predicted by applying a physics-based hydrogen embrittlement model which incorporates the effects of hydrogen concentration, hydrogen diffusivity, residual stress, loading state and temperature. The present work demonstrates the dissimilar susceptibility of austenite and ferrite to hydrogen embrittlement, providing a tool to describe it.

Funding source: HEmS (grant number EP/L014742/1); DARE (grant number EP/L025213/1); UK Engineering and Physical Science Research Council (EPSRC); Royal Academy of Engineering Grant number (RCSRF1718/5/32)
Countries: United Kingdom

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