Investigation of Microstructure Properties and Quantitative Metallography by Different Etchants in the Service-Exposed Nickel-Based Superalloy Turbine Blade

  • Amirhossein Khodabakhshi
  • Alireza Mashreghi
  • Yazdan Shajari
  • Seyed Hossein Razavi
Technical Paper


In this study, the effect of etchant type and etching conditions on the root and airfoil microstructure of a service-exposed IN738 turbine blade has been investigated. The microstructure of superalloy components used at high temperatures, in addition to the usual microstructural changes, experiences deterioration in micrometer dimensions. In order to investigate these changes, electrochemical etching was performed on the samples with the chemical solution including 80% phosphoric acid, solution containing Cr2O3 and 55% glycerol. Chemical etching was performed with marble and etchant solution containing 60% glycerol. The results in terms of specifying the deterioration effects on microstructure of the blade applied at high temperature, the amount of γ′ phase and the best etchant were investigated. Among the solutions used for chemical etching, the solution containing 10 ml HNO3, 50 ml HCl and 60 ml glycerol was appropriate for detection of segregations and dendrites, and among the electrochemical etching solutions, the Cr2O3 solution was found suitable for specifying γ′ precipitates’ morphology by scanning electron microscopy. In this research, the results of the quantitative analysis of the images provided by these etchants were also investigated.


Nickel-based superalloy Microstructure Chemical etching Electro-etch 


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Copyright information

© The Indian Institute of Metals - IIM 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Amirhossein Khodabakhshi
    • 1
  • Alireza Mashreghi
    • 1
  • Yazdan Shajari
    • 2
  • Seyed Hossein Razavi
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Mining and Metallurgical EngineeringYazd UniversityYazdIran
  2. 2.Department of Materials EngineeringIslamic Azad UniversityKarajIran
  3. 3.School of Metallurgy and Materials EngineeringIran University of Science and Technology (IUST)TehranIran

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