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    Volume 5, Issue 5 (December 2016)

    Special Issue Paper

    Low Temperature Plasma Nitriding and Nitrocarburising of a Superaustenitic Stainless Steel

    (Received 11 April 2016; accepted 11 May 2016)

    Published Online: 22 December 2016


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    Low temperature surface engineering of stainless steels by dissolving large quantities of nitrogen and carbon has become a favorable technological process. Such treatments usually yield the so-called expanded austenite, which is a super-saturated diffusion zone and can be produced by a salt, gas, or plasma-based processes. The present manuscript addressed the production of expanded austenite on a superaustenitic stainless steel at low temperature. Gas mixtures with nitrogen or both nitrogen and carbon bearing gases were applied in a plasma atmosphere at 400°C for 5 h. Microstructural characterization was conducted applying light optical microscopy, X-ray diffraction, and transmission electron microscopy. In addition, microhardness measurements were performed at the surface of the samples. Plasma nitriding and nitrocarburising at 400°C resulted in a homogeneous case composed solely by expanded austenite as detected by X-ray diffraction. Similar microhardness was observed for both processes, whereas nitrocarburising provided a thicker diffusion zone when compared to nitriding. Fine iron-chromium nitride precipitation was only identified by transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Selected area electron diffraction yields similar lattice parameters for both processes.

    Author Information:

    Fernandes, F. A. P.
    Center of Engineering, Modelling and Applied Social Sciences, Federal Univ. of ABC (UFABC) - São Bernardo do Campo, São Paulo 09606-070,

    Casteletti, L. C.
    Department of Materials Engineering, Univ. of São Paulo (USP) - São Carlos, São Paulo,

    Gallego, J.
    Department of Mechanical Engineering, São Paulo State Univ. (UNESP) - Ilha Solteira, São Paulo,

    Stock #: MPC20160048


    DOI: 10.1520/MPC20160048

    Title Low Temperature Plasma Nitriding and Nitrocarburising of a Superaustenitic Stainless Steel
    Symposium ,
    Committee E42