Characterization of precipitates in a 7.9Cr–1.65Mo–1.25Si–1.2V steel during tempering

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In this paper, the precipitates formed during the tempering after quenching from temperature 1150 °C for 7.90Cr–1.65Mo–1.25Si–1.2V steels are investigated using an analytical transmission electron microscope (A-TEM).The study of this tempering is carried out in isothermal and anisothermal conditions, by comparing the results given by dilatometry and hot hardness. Tempering is performed in the range of 300–700 °C. Coarse primary carbides retained after heat treatment are V-rich MC and Cr–Mo-rich M7C3 types. In turn, it gives a significant influence on the precipitation of fine secondary carbides, that is, secondary hardening during tempering. The major secondary carbides are Cr–Mo–V-rich M′C (and/or) Cr–Mo-rich M2C type. The peak hardness is observed in the tempering range of 450–500 °C. In the end, we observe between 600 and 700 °C, that this impoverished changes the phase. At these high temperatures of tempering, we observe that there is a carbide formation of the types M6C developing at the expense of the fine M7C3 carbides previously formed