A hypoeutectoid steel was austenitized at 840 °C for one hour and cooled at two rates. Examination by optical and scanning electron microscopy showed a change in the pearlite microstructure. Cooling in air as compared to furnace cooling reduced the pearlite interlamellar spacing and increased the hardness. The slower cooling resulted in a lower tensile strength, higher tensile elongation, and different fracture appearance.

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