The martensitic stainless steel (termed as 13/4) is currently being used for fabrication of underwater parts in hydroelectric projects. There are, however, several maintenance problems associated with the use of this steel. A nitronic steel (termed as 21-4-N) has been developed as an alternative with the specific aim of overcoming these problems. A comparative study has been made on the erosion behaviour of 13/4 and 21-4-N steels by means of solid particle impingement using gas jet. The eroded surfaces after erosion tests were analysed by scanning electron microscopy. It is observed that the 21-4-N nitronic steel possesses better resistance to erosion in comparison to 13/4 martensitic stainless steel. The austenitic matrix of the nitronic steel possesses high hardness, high tensile toughness and work hardening ability, which results in higher erosion resistance.
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Chauhan, A.K., Goel, D.B. & Prakash, S. Erosion behaviour of hydro turbine steels. Bull Mater Sci 31, 115–120 (2008). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12034-008-0020-6