T122 is a competitive heat resistant steel used for the construction of ultra super critical power stations. The authors experimentally investigated the effect of heat treatment and variation of influential chemical elements, such as vanadium, copper and nitrogen, on the microstructure and properties of the steel, in which the optimal heat treatment schedule during heating was specified and the proper chemical element scope was also decided to achieve the expected service performance. The application and potential of the steel in China today and tomorrow were reasonably briefed. On the other hand, the authors also proposed some intrinsic challenge of the steel, which may undermine the basis of the industrial application of the steel, comparing to other candidates, i.e. T92 steel. An assessment on T122 steel was carefully made from the viewpoint of industrial manufacturing and application.