650°C Long-Term Structure Stability Study on 18Cr-9Ni-3CuNbN Heat-Resistant Steel
The Cu-containing austenitic heat-resistant steel 18Cr-9Ni-3CuNbN has been widely used as superheater and reheater tube material for modern ultra-super-critical (USC) power plants in the world. High temperature structure stability is considered to be an important factor for long-term service. Long-term aging at 650°C for this steel was conducted from 100 to 10,000hours. Effect of aging time on microstructure was studied by means of SEM, TEM and 3DAP (three dimensional atom probe). Micro-hardness tests were carried out after aging at 650°C for different times to be considered as a representative of strength. Experimental results show that Cu-rich phase, MX and M23C6 are major strengthening precipitates in this steel. With on increasing of aging time, fine nano-size Cu-rich phase particles precipitate in the grains and its size is in the range of several nanometers to 35nm till 10,000h at 650°C. The fraction of MX also increases with aging time and its average size is about 100nm till 10,000h. Carbide M23C6 mainly precipitates at grain boundaries and coarsens quickly. Investigation results show that the most important strengthening effect for 18Cr-9Ni-3CuNbN steel is contributed by Cu-rich phase and MX in the grains and M23C6 carbide at the grain boundaries.
Jian-Feng Nie and Allan Morton
H. Y. Yu et al., "650°C Long-Term Structure Stability Study on 18Cr-9Ni-3CuNbN Heat-Resistant Steel", Materials Science Forum, Vols. 654-656, pp. 118-121, 2010