Importance of microstructure in determining environmental susceptibility of stainless steels
Weight loss and stress corrosion studies on ASTM A304 stainless steels subjected to different degrees of cold working and exposed to magnesium chloride solutions at different pH levels revealed that environmental resistance is a sensitive function of microstructure. Slip bands are preferential regions of attack in cold worked structures, while sensitization alters the crack path to follow the grain boundaries. The similarities in the relative susceptibility of the various microstructural features under conditions of general corrosion, stress corrosion, and hydrogen embrittlement suggests that any mechanism that is developed must be able to comprehensively explain the observed phenomena under all three forms of environmental degradation.
KeywordsAustenitic Stainless Steel Stress Corrosion Stress Corrosion Crack Slip Band Crack Path
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