Effects of Surface Modification by Means of Low-Temperature Plasma Nitriding on Wetting and Corrosion Behavior of Austenitic Stainless Steel
Low-temperature nitriding of austenitic stainless steels produces modified surface layers, consisting mainly of the S phase, which improve surface hardness and corrosion resistance. Because of the localized plastic deformations, owing to modified layer formation, and ion bombardment occurring during the process itself, this treatment produces also modifications of surface morphology and roughness, which can affect wettability and corrosion behavior. In this study the effects of plasma
... of plasma nitriding, performed using different treatment conditions, on the surface morphology and roughness, and thus on wettability and corrosion resistance, of AISI 202 specimens with different initial finishings (2D and polished finishing) were investigated. Different probe liquids, having both high (bi-distilled water and solution of 3.5% NaCl) and low (ethanol and rapeseed oil) surface tension, were employed for assessing the wetting behavior with the sessile drop method. The contact angle values for water increased markedly when nitriding was performed on polished samples, while this increase was smaller for 2D samples, and on selected specimens a hydrophobic behavior was observed. Very low contact angle values were registered using low surface tension liquids, suggesting an oleophilic behavior. Corrosion resistance in a 5% NaCl solution was assessed, and it depended on the characteristics of the nitrided specimens.