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Characterization of Aging Behavior in M250 Grade Maraging Steel Using Ultrasonic Measurements

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Ultrasonic measurements have been carried out in M250 grade maraging steel specimens subjected to solution annealing at 1093 K for 1 hour followed by aging at 755 K for various durations in the range of 0.25 to 100 hours. The influence of aging on microstructure, room temperature hardness, and ultrasonic parameters (longitudinal and shear wave velocities and Poisson’s ratio) has been studied in order to derive correlations among these parameters in aged M250 maraging steel. Both hardness and ultrasonic velocities exhibit almost similar behaviors with aging time. They increase with the precipitation of intermetallic phases, Ni3Ti and Fe2Mo, and decrease with the reversion of martensite to austenite. Ultrasonic shear wave velocity is found to be more influenced by the precipitation of intermetallic phases, whereas longitudinal wave velocity is influenced more by the reversion of martensite to austenite. Unlike hardness and ultrasonic velocities, the Poisson’s ratio exhibits a monotonous decrease with aging time and, hence, can be used for unambiguous monitoring of the aging process in M250 maraging steel. Further, none of the parameters, i.e., hardness, ultrasonic velocity, or Poisson’s ratio, alone could identify the initiation of the reversion of austenite at early stage; however, the same could be identified from the correlation between ultrasonic velocity and Poisson’s ratio, indicating the advantage of using the multiparametric approach for comprehensive characterization of complex aging behavior in M250 grade maraging steel.

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We are thankful to Dr. S.L. Mannan, Former Director, Metallurgy and Materials Group, and Mr. P. Kalyanasundaram, Associate Director, Inspection and Technology Group, Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research (IGCAR), Kalpakkam, for their cooperation and support. We are also thankful to Dr. P. Shankar and Mr. S. Mahadevan, IGCAR, Kalpakkam, for useful discussions.

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Correspondence to Anish Kumar.

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Manuscript submitted June 14, 2006.

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Rajkumar, K., Kumar, A., Jayakumar, T. et al. Characterization of Aging Behavior in M250 Grade Maraging Steel Using Ultrasonic Measurements. Metall Mater Trans A 38, 236–243 (2007).

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