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Identification of the Direction-Dependency of the Martensitic Transformation in Stainless Steel Using In Situ Magnetic Permeability Measurements

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The evolution of the martensite content is monitored throughout uniaxial tensile experiments on anisotropic temper-rolled stainless steel 301LN. Several martensite content measurement techniques are discussed. It is found that micrography, basic X-ray diffraction and EBSD provide good qualitative results, but the absolute errors in the estimated absolute martensite content can be greater than 10%. Magnetic saturation induction measurements provide the spatial average of the martensite content over a large volume, which eliminates inaccuracies associated with metallographic surface preparation. Inverse magnetostriction of the ferromagnetic martensitic phase has a strong effect on the results from magnetic permeability measurements. It is critically important to remove all elastic strains before measuring the magnetic permeability. Neutron diffraction is used to quantify the residual lattice strains in the martensite after removing all macroscopic elastic strains. The results demonstrate that the linear relationship between the magnetic permeability and the martensite content holds true despite the presence of small residual strains. In situ measurements of the martensite content evolution during tensile tests along the rolling, the cross-rolling and the 45° direction of the anisotropic sheet material reveal that the transformation kinetics are independent of the loading direction in stainless steel 301LN under uniaxial tension.

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    This output signal corresponds to the ferrite content when ferrite is the only ferromagnetic phase of the sample.


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Thanks are due to Dr. Pierre-Olivier Santacreu and Benoit Proult of ArcelorMittal for valuable discussions and their help on the martensite content measurements. Dr. Eva Heripre from LMS is thanked for performing the EBSD measurements. Thanks are also due to Dr. Scott Speakman of MIT for assistance with X-ray diffraction analysis, as well as Dr. Camden Hubbard, Josh Schmidlin, and Brian Cady at ORNL for their assistance in carrying out the neutron diffraction experiments. This work made use of the MRSEC Shared Experimental Facilities supported by the National Science Foundation under award number DMR-0819762. Neutron diffraction research sponsored by the Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Office of FreedomCAR and Vehicle Technologies, as part of the High Temperature Materials Laboratory User Program, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, managed by UT-Battelle, LLC, for the U.S. Department of Energy under contract number DE-AC05-00OR22725. The partial support of the MIT Fracture Consortium on Advanced High Strength Steels is gratefully acknowledged. Allison Beese was supported by the Department of Defense (DoD) through the National Defense Science & Engineering Graduate Fellowship (NDSEG) Program.

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Correspondence to D. Mohr.

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Beese, A., Mohr, D. Identification of the Direction-Dependency of the Martensitic Transformation in Stainless Steel Using In Situ Magnetic Permeability Measurements. Exp Mech 51, 667–676 (2011).

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  • Stainless steel
  • Anisotropy
  • Phase transformation
  • Magnetic permeability
  • Ferritescope
  • Villari effect