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Published in mid-1951 by the Instituto de Pesquisas Tecnológias (IPT-SP) [Technological Research Institute of São Paulo State], Bulletin no. 40 about the metallography of common iron and steel products has helped fulfill an important demand in the mechanical and metallurgical sectors, which needed a technical book that could serve as a manual for solving problems related to the properties and applications of iron and steel products.

Notwithstanding the fact that it has been solely distributed by IPT-SP, the first edition went out of stock in a few years, due to its high technical and scientific quality and the excellent documentation, all in a very didactic presentation format.

Although the guidelines to be adopted for the second edition had already been defined, the sudden passing away of the author in January 1957 rendered impossible the satisfactory conclusion of the revised work.

Having had the opportunity to collaborate with Colpaert for more than 12 years, having followed the lecture notes prepared by him that led to Bulletin no. 40, and being familiar with the use of this publication as a textbook, I was honored with the task of performing the revisions needed for this second edition.

In the first edition, some of the fundamental principles were presented in a simplified manner or even omitted. During use as a textbook, it was noted that this simplification in some chapters, such as the one on micrography and heat treatment, ended up creating barriers to the best understanding. This classroom experience suggested a complete revision of these chapters, particularly the one focused on heat treatments. The simplified presentation of transformation diagrams in the austenite decomposition processes that in the first edition was made in the form of a “critical segment” was replaced with the presentation of isothermal and continuous cooling transformation diagrams. The atomic mechanisms involved in these processes were discussed in more detail so that the changes observed by the metallographic examination could be better understood.

The chapter on cast irons could not be further improved because due to the complexity of the subject, from a didactic point of view, a simplified presentation that would offer a first view acting as a basis for further studies was preferred to a detailed discussion of the graphitization processes, which could make the text almost inaccessible to those being introduced to the subject.

Alberto Albuquerque Arantes
São Paulo, November 1959

2018. "Preface to the Second Edition", Metallography of Steels: Interpretation of Structure and the Effects of Processing, Hubertus Colpaert, André Luiz V. da Costa e Silva

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