For high-strength steels developed at the National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS) in Japan, a dispersion of nano-sized MX nitride particles along boundaries and in the matrix is achieved by reducing carbon concentration below 0.02%. This structure results in excellent creep strength at 923K, approximately two orders of magnitude longer rupture time than P92. Additionally, adding a large amount of boron exceeding 0.01% combined with minimized nitrogen effectively improves creep rupture strength by stabilizing the martensitic microstructure during creep. Efforts have been made to enhance the steam oxidation resistance of these 9Cr steels strengthened by boron and fine MX nitrides. A combination of 0.7% Si, 40-60 ppm S, and pre-oxidation treatment was applied. Steam oxidation tests were conducted at 923K for up to 4000h. Pre-oxidation treatment in argon gas at 973K for 50h significantly improved oxidation resistance in steam at 923K by forming a protective Cr-rich oxide layer. The pre-oxidized steels exhibited much lower mass gain in steam at 923K than Mod.9Cr-1Mo steel at 873K, and lower than T91 at 873K after 1000h. After 4000h, their mass gain was about zero, much lower than P91 at 873K and 923K. SEM/EDS analysis and low mass gain suggest a protective Cr-rich oxide scale formed on the pre-oxidized steel surface, exhibiting excellent oxidation resistance in steam at 923K.

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