Steel Heat Treating Fundamentals and Processes
Gas Nitriding and Gas Nitrocarburizing of Steels
This article summarizes the terminology for gas reactions, and discusses low-temperature nitriding and nitrocarburizing of stainless steels. It describes the various nitriding processes, namely, high- and low-pressure nitriding, oxynitriding, sulfonitriding, oxysulfonitriding, ferritic nitrocarburizing and austenitic nitrocarburizing. The article includes a discussion on the difficulties in specimen cleaning, importance of furnace purge, uses of pre and post oxidation, depassivation, or activation, and requirements for perfect nucleation in nitriding process. In nitriding, the successful atmosphere control depends on various potentials. The article summarizes the methods of measuring potentials in nitriding and nitrocarburizing, provides useful information on the furnaces used, and the safety precautions to be followed in the nitriding process. It also describes the sample preparation procedures and testing methods to ensure the quality of the sample.