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Evaluation of Grade 91 Microstructure and Creep Rupture Strength as a Result of Heat Treatment Around the Intercritical Zone
Product ID: 1015818 Date Published: 26-Mar-2009 File size: 27.83 MB Abstract The goal of this project was to evaluate the microstructure and mechanical properties of Grade 91 steel heattreated around the intercritical temperature regime. This involved first evaluating the methods available for determining the intercritical temperatures, and then performing a series of laboratory heat treatments on one heat of material to evaluate microstructure and properties. Objective Boiler and piping engineers, metallurgists, welding engineers, and plant personnel responsible for installation, overseeing fabrication and welding, and operating plants with Grade 91 piping, tubing, and components must be aware of the need for careful observance of required conditions for any heat treatment involving Grade 91. The report aids in understanding the upper bound for tempering heat treatments. For cases in which improper heat treatment has occurred and properties are degraded, this report also provides some data to assist in making run/replace decisions (the data are limited and are not sufficient to support detailed life assessment calculations). Approach In order to evaluate the effect of intercritical and near-intercritical heat treatment on the microstructure, hardness, and creep properties of Grade 91 steel, a series of experiments and calculations to determine intercritical temperatures was conducted. The results of this study were used to perform a series of heat treatments on one heat of material for detailed microstructural analysis and mechanical testing. The results are very consistent with other open literature research when properly viewed in the context of using the A1 as the lower intercritical temperature. Results This report gives clear guidance on the heat treatment of Grade 91, the limitations of hardness and optical microscopy, and the importance of proper heat treatment. The report also provides data on the properties of improperly heat-treated material and guidance on what measures can be taken if such material is found in service. Application, Value and Use The increasing use of high-strength materials, including creep-strength-enhanced ferritic steels such as Grade 91 in new plant construction and component replacement, makes it critical that the utility industry develops an understanding of the effect that improper heat treatment may have on materials and in turn component life. Scientific tools such as computational thermodynamics (utilized in this study) can be used to assist in setting heat treatment conditions for these applications. EPRI Perspective The use of various definitions of intercritical temperature has resulted in confusion about the best methodology for avoiding improper heat treatment of Grade 91. This study clearly shows that a computational thermodynamic assessment, which takes only a matter of minutes, can give a good conservative upper bound for tempering heat treatment of Grade 91 steel as opposed to expensive and time-consuming experimental techniques. Furthermore, the data clearly show a dramatic detrimental effect on material strength and thus component life if Grade 91 is heat -treated in the intercritical regime. Program 2008 Program 87 Fossil Materials and Repair Keywords A1 AC1 Grade 91 Heat Treatment Intercritical temperature Steel Report 000000000001015818 Sector Name: Generation Document Type: Technical Report FileType: Adobe PDF (.pdf)

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