, Volume 45, Issue 10, pp 52–55 | Cite as

EDM and the resulting hydrogen embrittlement of maraging steel

  • Terrence M. Quick
Steel Research Summary


The use of electrical discharge machining (EDM), or spark erosion as it is sometimes called, introduces hydrogen into maraging steel 250 such that brittle fracture surfaces result from embrittlement accelerated by slow-strain-rate tensile tests. Brittle fracture features indicate potential premature failure due to hydrogen embrittlement. Experimental control was provided by test specimens machined by abrasive waterjet, a machining technique that does not evolve hydrogen as a part of the machining process. Hydrogen concentration measurements indicate the hydrogen concentration of specimens fabricated by EDM is approximately 0.5 ppm, while that of specimens machined by abrasive waterjet is approximately 0.1 ppm. On the basis of constant-load tests, the time to failure of test specimens machined by EDM and loaded to 50% of the yield strength is estimated to be a minimum of 30 years.


Test Specimen Electrical Discharge Machine Hydrogen Concentration Hydrogen Embrittlement Maraging Steel 
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Copyright information

© TMS 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Terrence M. Quick
    • 1
  1. 1.Chemistry and Materials Science DepartmentLawrence Livermore National LaboratoryLivermoreUSA

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