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Creep-Resistant, Al2O3-Forming Austenitic Stainless Steels

Science  20 Apr 2007:
Vol. 316, Issue 5823, pp. 433-436
DOI: 10.1126/science.1137711

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Abstract

A family of inexpensive, Al2O3-forming, high–creep strength austenitic stainless steels has been developed. The alloys are based on Fe-20Ni-14Cr-2.5Al weight percent, with strengthening achieved through nanodispersions of NbC. These alloys offer the potential to substantially increase the operating temperatures of structural components and can be used under the aggressive oxidizing conditions encountered in energy-conversion systems. Protective Al2O3 scale formation was achieved with smaller amounts of aluminum in austenitic alloys than previously used, provided that the titanium and vanadium alloying additions frequently used for strengthening were eliminated. The smaller amounts of aluminum permitted stabilization of the austenitic matrix structure and made it possible to obtain excellent creep resistance. Creep-rupture lifetime exceeding 2000 hours at 750°C and 100 megapascals in air, and resistance to oxidation in air with 10% water vapor at 650° and 800°C, were demonstrated.

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