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The manufacture of large-scale pressure vessels required for coal gasification and liquefaction systems requires a steel technology capable of producing plates up to 400 mm (16 in.) thick with good combinations of strength, fracture toughness, resistance to hydrogenous environments, weldability in the field, and resistance to temper embrittlement. A research program was initiated with the object of optimizing microstructure and mechanical properties of thick-section 2¼Cr-1Mo steels through compositional modifications. It was found that minor additions of nickel and manganese led to improved mechanical properties in simulated slow-cooled thick plates through the presence of optimum microstructural constituents.
As an extension to this program, the temper-embrittlement susceptibility, hydrogenattack resistance, weldability, fracture toughness, and elevated temperature properties of the modified alloys are now being compared with those of commercial SA 387 steel. A summary of results obtained to date is presented.
2¼Cr-1Mo steel, thick section applications, microstructure, mechanical properties, impact toughness, temper embrittlement, hydrogen attack, weldability, alloy design, nickel-manganese modifications
Senior Metallurgist, Anamet Laboratories, Inc., Berkeley, Calif.
Research Engineer, University of California, Berkeley, Calif.