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X-ray double crystal diffractometry (XRDCD) was used to assess cyclic microstructural deformation in a face centered cubic (fcc) steel (AISI304) and a body centered cubic (bcc) steel (SA508 class 2). The objectives of the investigation were to determine if XRDCD could be used effectively to monitor cyclic microstructural deformation in polycrystalline Fe alloys and to study the distribution of the microstructural deformation induced by cyclic loading in these alloys. The approach used in the investigation was to induce fatigue damage in a material and to characterize the resulting microstructural deformation at discrete fractions of the fatigue life of the material. Also, characterization of microstructural deformation was carried out to identify differences in the accumulation of damage from the surface to the bulk, focusing on the following three regions: near surface (0–10 μm), subsurface (10–300 μm), and bulk. Characterization of the subsurface region was performed only on the AISI304 material because of the limited availability of the SA508 material. The results from the XRDCD data indicate a measurable change induced by fatigue from the initial state to subsequent states of both the AISI304 and the SA508 materials. Therefore, the XRDCD technique was shown to be sensitive to the microstructural deformation caused by fatigue in steels; thus, the technique can be used to monitor fatigue damage in steels. In addition, for the AISI304 material, the level of cyclic microstructural deformation in the bulk material was found to be greater than the level in the near surface material. In contrast, previous investigations have shown that the deformation is greater in the near surface than the bulk for Al alloys and bcc Fe alloys.
fatigue damage, cyclic microstructural deformation, X-ray diffraction, X-ray double crystal diffractometry, AISI304, stainless steel, SA508, pressure vessel steel
Engineer, Lockheed Martin Corporation, Schenectady, NY
Professor of Engineering Mechanics, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA