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Intercritical Austenite Formation and Decomposition in the Coarse Grain Heat-Affected Zone of an X80 Line Pipe Steel


Martensite–austenite constituents (M/A) decomposed from intercritical austenite in the coarse grain heat-affected zone (CGHAZ) affect the mechanical properties of welded steel pipelines. This work reports a quantitative investigation of intercritical austenite formation and its decomposition in the CGHAZ of an X80 line pipe steel through simulated welding thermal excursions, dilatometry, and metallography. The evolution of microstructure which involves austenite formation, a transformation stasis, and decomposition was revealed and used to rationalize the observation that only 0.05 to 0.1 M/A fraction is typically found in industrial welds.

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This work was undertaken, in part, thanks to funding from the Canada Research Chair program (Poole). The authors are grateful to the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), Evraz Inc. NA and TC Energy for their financial support. They would also like to thank Dr. M. Kulakov, for the weld trials, and Dr. M. Mandal, N. Romualdi, and B. Tran for their respective help on the experimental studies.

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

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Zhang, T., Roy, S., Patra, S. et al. Intercritical Austenite Formation and Decomposition in the Coarse Grain Heat-Affected Zone of an X80 Line Pipe Steel. Metall Mater Trans A 53, 3239–3244 (2022).

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