Heat Treating of Irons and Steels
Precipitation hardening is a hardening mechanism found in various steels and alloy systems, such as nickel-, cobalt-, titanium-, copper-, and iron-base alloys. This article provides a brief description of precipitation hardening process, furnace equipment, surface-related problems, and protective atmospheres used in heat treatment of iron-base precipitation-hardenable (PH) superalloys. It focuses on various factors to be considered in heat treating of PH stainless steels: cleaning prior to heat treatment, furnace atmospheres, time-temperature cycles, variations in cycles, and scale removal after heat treatment. The article describes the mechanical properties, solution treatment, and aging treatment for many martensitic PH alloys, including: Alloy 17-4 PH, Alloy 13-8 Mo, Alloy 15-5 PH, Custom 450, and Custom 455; as well as semiaustenitic PH stainless steels such as Alloy 17-7 PH, Alloy PH 15-7 Mo, AM-350, Pyromet 350, AM-355, and Pyromet 355; austenitic PH stainless steel, A-286; cast PH stainless steels; and iron-nickel PH superalloys.