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Ductile cast irons are heat treated to create matrix microstructures and associated mechanical properties not readily obtained in the as-cast condition. This article provides a detailed account of the general characteristics of ductile irons. It discusses the most important heat treatments of ductile irons, namely, stress relieving, austenitizing, annealing, normalizing, quenching, martempering, austempering, and surface hardening. The article elucidates the effects of these heat treatments on the mechanical properties of the ductile irons.

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