’Quenching and Partitioning’ - An In Situ Approach to Characterize the Process Kinetics and the Final Microstructure of TRIP-Assisted Steel
The ‘Quenching and Partitioning’ (Q&P) concept aims to increase the strength level of conventional TRIP-assisted advanced high strength steel (AHSS) by replacing ferritic constituents by tempered martensite. The Q&P heat treatment process involves austenitization and interrupted quenching followed by carbon partitioning from martensite to austenite at elevated temperatures. The final microstructure is traditionally investigated at room temperature after metallographic preparation by microscopy and x-ray analysis with laboratory tubes. Besides other disadvantages the established characterization methods are not adequate to observe the development of the microstructure during Q&P treatment. In the present work the microstructural evolution during Q&P processing was monitored by in-situ diffraction experiments using very hard (100 keV) synchrotron x-ray radiation. Debye-Scherrer rings were recorded as a function of time and temperature during the heat treatment in a state-of-the-art dilatometer (type Bähr DIL805AD) at the Engineering Materials Science beamline HARWI-II (HZG outstation at Deutsches Elektronensynchrotron (DESY), Hamburg). The diffraction patterns contain quantitative information on the phases present in the sample (for more details cf. Abstract Carmele et al, this conference). The evolution of the austenite phase fraction during the partitioning treatment at the quench temperature (1-step Q&P) is discussed exemplarily for a Si-based TRIP steel with additions of Ni.
T. Chandra, M. Ionescu and D. Mantovani
T. Rieger et al., "’Quenching and Partitioning’ - An In Situ Approach to Characterize the Process Kinetics and the Final Microstructure of TRIP-Assisted Steel", Advanced Materials Research, Vol. 409, pp. 713-718, 2012