International Journal of Fracture

, Volume 215, Issue 1–2, pp 139–151 | Cite as

Fracture toughness of high-alloy austenitic-martensitic TRIP steels after Q&P processing

  • R. EcknerEmail author
  • L. Krüger
  • C. Ullrich
  • M. Wendler
  • O. Volkova
Brief Note


The recently developed austenitic-martensitic TRIP cast steel Fe–14Cr–3Ni–3Mn–0.4Si–0.11N–0.15C was subjected to different Quenching & Partitioning (Q&P) treatments in order to achieve a variation of the microstructural and mechanical properties. Subsequently, the fracture properties of three material variants were studied by means of tensile tests and fracture mechanical 3-point-bending tests to determine J\(\Delta a\) fracture resistance curves. Due to Q&P treatment, the steel achieved considerable strength and ductility values (UTS of about 1500 MPa with a total elongation of almost 30%) which qualify it for the 3rd generation of AHSS. The fracture toughness behavior was significantly influenced by the initial \(\upalpha ^\prime \)-martensite content as well as by the austenite stability, which could be adjusted by varying the Q&P parameters. If the austenite stability was low, the formation of deformation-induced \(\upalpha ^\prime \)-martensite became possible. This TRIP effect is known to be beneficial for fracture toughness of austenitic steels. However, the experimental results suggest that there was a contrary effect of embrittlement due to metastable austenite which undergoes martensitic transformation already in the early stages of deformation. Therefore, the Q&P parameters have to be carefully chosen in order to achieve a remarkable combination of strength, ductility and fracture toughness of the investigated high-alloy austenitic-martensitic TRIP steel.


Q&P steel TRIP-aided steel Toughness Fracture Martensite transformation 



This work was supported by the German Research Foundation or Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG), and was created as part of the Collaborative Research Center TRIP-Matrix-Composites (SFB 799), subproject B2. Furthermore, we would like to thank Mr. R. Prang for his excellent sample preparation preceding the microstructural investigations and Mr. S. Henschel and Mrs. E.-M. Kandler for their help in the fracture surface investigations.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. Eckner
    • 1
    Email author
  • L. Krüger
    • 1
  • C. Ullrich
    • 2
  • M. Wendler
    • 3
  • O. Volkova
    • 3
  1. 1.Technische Universität Bergakademie Freiberg, Institute of Materials EngineeringFreibergGermany
  2. 2.Technische Universität Bergakademie Freiberg, Institute of Materials ScienceFreibergGermany
  3. 3.Technische Universität Bergakademie Freiberg, Institute of Iron and Steel TechnologyFreibergGermany

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