Manufacturing of 42SiCr-pipes for quenching and partitioning by longitudinal HFI-Welding
In the pipe manufacturing and pipe processing industry, the demand for cost-effective pipes with high strength and good ductility is increasing. In the present study, the inductive longitudinal welding process was combined with a Quenching and Partitioning (Q&P) treatment to manufacture pipes with enhanced mechanical properties. The aim of the Q&P process is to establish a martensitic structure with increased retained austenite content. This allows for the beneficial use of both phases: the
... oth phases: the strength of martensite as well as the ductility of retained austenite. A 42SiCr steel, developed for Q&P processes, was joined at the longitudinal seam by a high-frequency induction (HFI) welding process and was subsequently heat-treated. The applied heat treatments included normalizing, austenitizing, quenching, and two Q&P strategies (Q&P-A/Q&P-B) with distinct quenching (Tq = 200/150◦ C) and partitioning temperatures (Tp = 300/250◦ C). Investigations of the microstructures revealed that Q&P tubes exhibit increased amounts of retained austenite in the martensitic matrix. Differences between the weld junction and the base material occurred, especially regarding the morphology of the martensite; the martensite found in the weld junction is finer and corresponds more to the lath-type morphology, compared to the base material in the circumference. In all zones of the welded tube circumference, retained austenite has been found in similar distributions. The mechanical testing of the individual tubes demonstrated that the Q&P treatments offer increased strength compared to all other states and significantly improved ductility compared to the quenched condition. Therefore, the approach of Q&P treatment of HFI-welded tubes represents a route for the mass production of high-strength tubular products with improved ductility.