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Dynamic characterization of eglin steel by symmetric impact experimentation

Bradley E Martin, Philip J Flater, Rachel Abrahams, Christopher Neel, William Reinhart et al. Citation: AIP Conf. Proc. 1426, 979 (2012); doi: 10.1063/1.3686441 View online: View Table of Contents: Published by the American Institute of Physics.

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Bradley E. Martin , Philip J. Flater , Rachel A. Abrahams , Christopher H. Neel , William D. Reinhart and Lalit C. Chhabildas

Air Force Research Laboratory, Munitions Directorate, Eglin AFB, FL 32542 Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM 87185-1187

Abstract. Well-controlled impact studies have been conducted on heat treated ES-1 (i.e. Eglin steel) to determine their dynamic material properties. In particular gas-gun and time-resolved laser interferometry was used to measure the ne structure in the particle velocity prole resulting from symmetric impact. Nominal impact pressures range from 8 to 20 GPa at corresponding impact velocities of 0.400 km/s and 1.00 km/s, respectively. These experiments have allowed us to estimate the dynamic yield and spall strengths and phase transition kinetics of the material. Keywords: ES-1, steel, symmetric impact, shock PACS: 64.30.Ef However, additional experiments are required to better dene spall kinetics beyond the phase transition.

INTRODUCTION ES-1 high-strength alloy steel properties can be easily tailored for various applications by altering the heat-treatment. Furthermore, this alloy contains small amounts of nickel, chromium, and cobalt making ES-1 signicantly less expensive than other comparative alloys e.g., AerMet 100, HP9-4-20M, AF1410 etc. [1]. The exibility of material properties and greatly reduced cost makes this alloy attractive for high rate applications such as landing gear, ordnance, drive shafts, etc. To this end, the Hugoniot properties of ES-1 have yet to be explored and therefore are measured in this investigation. Results of these experiments indicate the dynamic yield strength of ES-1 is ~ 2.35 GPa with a spall strength of ~ 6.34 GPa for Hugoniot stresses below the solid to solid phase transition that occurs above 12.8 GPa. Our preliminary results indicate the Hugoniot properties of ES-1 could be similar to that of other highstrength alloys. Limited experimental data in this report suggests that the phase transformation kinetics do not inuence the spall strength of the material.

MATERIAL CHARACTERISTICS The average density of the heat-treated ES-1 material used in this investigation is 7.791 g/cm3 with the major alloying elements being silicon, chromium, and tungsten [1]. The material may be heat treated under varying conditions to obtain specic properties, however, in general all heat treatments consist of a normalizing phase, followed by an austenizing phase and then oil quenched. Lastly, the material is subjected to an tempering phase and air cooled. When following this heat treatment the material will have a nominal impact toughness of 61 m-N and a quasistatic yield strength of 1380 MPa [1]. Ultrasonic techniques were used to determine the average longitudinal and shear-wave velocities of 5.880 km/s and 3.200 km/s, respectively, yielding a Poissons ratio, , of 0.290 and bulk wave speed of 4.582 km/s.

Shock Compression of Condensed Matter - 2011 AIP Conf. Proc. 1426, 979-982 (2012); doi: 10.1063/1.3686441 2012 American Institute of Physics 978-0-7354-1006-0/$0.00

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ES1 Steel Vimpact

1.1 1.0

Free Surface Velocity [km/s]

0.9 0.8 0.7 0.6 0.5 0.4 0.3 0.2 0.1 0.0 -0.1 0.0

Impactor TPX




FIGURE 1. Symmetric Impact Experimental Set-up.

EXPERIMENTAL TECHNIQUE The experimental set-up used for all the symmetric impact experiments is shown in Figure 1. The impactors were fabricated from ES-1 steel alloy with nominally half the thickness of the target to induce a spall plane at the mid-section of the target. It should be noted, that test PFFE-5 used an impactor with a thickness larger than half the target thickness to minimize wave attenuation at the interface due to release waves emanating from the backside of the impactor. The ES-1 impactors were launched using a 89 mm smooth bore powder gun at impact velocities ranging from 0.40 km/s to 1.00 km/s that were measured using three electrical shorting pins. These impact velocities produced Hugoniot stresses ranging around 8 to 20 GPa in the ES-1 target specimens. Four pins were mounted at 90 increments and ush on the impact plane to measured the planarity of the impactor (measured tilt was ~ 0.5 milliradians). In all the experiments the uncertainty in impactor velocity was ~ 0.2%. The free surface velocity proles were measured using a velocity interferometer, VISAR [2], with the proles shown in Figure 2 for impact velocities ranging from 0.4 to 1.0 km/s. Experiments PFFE-1 to PFFE-3 had impact velocities up to 0.8 km/s where only a two-wave structure is observed i.e., an elastic precursor followed by a plastic wave. Experiments PFFE-4 and PFFE-5 had impact velocities of 1.0 km/s with a three wave structure observed with a solid to solid phase transition following the plastic wave. The wave proles suggest the onset of a phase transition at a free surface velocity around 0.6 km/s.









Time from Impact [sec]

FIGURE 2. Free surface velocity proles for symmetric impact experiments conducted at an impact velocities ranging from 0.4 km/s - 1.0 km/s.

EXPERIMENTAL RESULTS Hugoniot Elastic Limit The impact conditions for all experiments are summarized in Table 1. As previously mentioned, for impact velocities below 0.789 km/s two-wave structure were observed with an initial elastic precursor followed by a plastic wave describing the transition from elastic to plastic deformation. Impact velocities above 0.789 km/s show a three-wave structure with the plastic wave followed by a solid to solid phase transition wave. Furthermore, in analyzing all wave structures the elastic precursor was used as a ducial for calculating the plastic and transition wave velocities since the leading edge of the elastic precursor is traveling at the elastic sound speed of the material. In analyzing the two-wave structures it was found that the elastic-to-plastic transition occurred at a free surface velocity of ~ 0.102 km/s. Knowing the free surface velocity at this transition the Hugoniot Elastic Limit (HEL) stress may be calculated using the expression HEL = (0CL uE ) /2 where 0 is the material initial density, CL the elastic longitudinal wave speed, and uE the free surface particle velocity where the elastic to plastic transition occurs. Using this relation the HEL was found to be 2.349 0.035 GPa with all experimental values summarized in Table 2. It should be noted, that it is not clear why a distinct elastic precursor was not observed in experi-

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ment PFFE-4, therefore this experiment was not used when calculating the HEL.



US [km/s]

Wave Proles The measured free surface particle velocity time history indicates a two-wave structure for experiments with impact velocities below 0.789 km/s (see Figure 2) while impact velocities above 0.789 km/s yield a three-wave structure (see Figure 2) even though the phase transition originates at an free surface velocity of ~ 0.6 km/s. The two-wave structure initially has an elastic precursor followed by a plastic wave producing plastic deformation. In the threewave structure a third wave follows the plastic wave bringing about a solid-to-solid phase transition in the material. This is commonly referred to as a transition wave. For the material investigated here this transition occurs at ~ 12.8 GPa, corresponding to a free surface velocity of 0.6 km/s, and may be similar to the transformation observed in Armco iron at ~ 13.0 GPa [3].

5.10 Us = 0.866up + 4.903


5.00 0.20








uP [km/s]

FIGURE 3. Plastic wave velocity vs. particle velocity variation for ES-1.

Plastic Waves In these experiments nite rise times were measured. Therefore, the plastic wave velocities were taken as the center between two tangent points following the transition from elastic-to-plastic deformation and just prior to reaching the peak free surface velocity. Furthermore, since symmetric impact experiments were conducted the material particle velocity behind the plastic wave is one-half the impact velocity. Employing this technique the plastic wave velocities were determined and summarized in Table 2. Using data in Table 2 one can establish the Us u p relationship shown in Figure 3. The variation of plastic wave velocities as a function of particle velocity is captured well using the linear law of variation, Us = 0.866u p + 4.903, where u p is the particle velocity behind the plastic wave of the material.

occurring at a free surface velocity of ~ 0.6 km/s, that follows the plastic wave and travels at a slower wave speed. To investigate this transition an experiment was conducted using a 3 mm thick impactor and gun launched at 1.0 km/s (see PFFE-4 in Figure 2). The free surface velocity prole for PFFE-4 shows a well established phase transition. However, due to the impactor being thin a rarefaction wave emanates from the backside of the impactor attenuating the phase transition wave causing the material to prematurely release. To mitigate this an additional experiment (see PFFE-5 in Figure 2) was conducted using a 4 mm thick impactor. A well dened phase transition was observed within the material as well as reaching higher Hugoniot stress than in experiment PFFE-4. However, it appears the wave is still attenuated by a rarefaction wave emanating from the backside of the impactor and attenuating the phase transition wave. Despite these complications, the onset of the transformation kinetics occurred at free surface velocities of 0.622 and 0.616 km/s for PFFE-4 and PFFE-5, respectively.

Spall Strength One objective of this investigation was to assess the materials spall strength under shock loading conditions. This was accomplished by conducting symmetric impact experiments to allow interaction of rarefaction waves. Rarefaction waves originate from

Phase Transition Waves The velocity prole for PFFE-3 (see Figure 2) revealed the onset of a solid-to-solid phase transition,

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TABLE 1. Summary of Impact Conditions Impact Velocity (km/s) 0.411 0.582 0.789 1.022 1.032 Target Thickness (mm) 5.959 5.913 5.997 5.984 5.923 Impactor Thickness (mm) 2.982 3.015 2.855 2.946 4.003 Target Density (g/cm3 ) 7.7918 7.7875 7.7905 7.7892 7.7954


Experimental Results for Symmetric Impacts for ES-1 Steel Vimp. (km/s) 0.411 0.582 0.789 1.022 1.032 HEL (GPa) 2.374 2.296 2.370 2.095 2.355 US (km/s) 5.085 5.140 5.149 5.186 5.183 uP (km/s) 0.205 0.291 0.300 0.311 0.308 V f .s. (km/s) 0.397 0.567 0.756 0.932 1.017 Hug * (GPa) 8.462 11.943 12.317 18.388 18.636 spall (GPa) 6.387 6.464 6.180 5.858 6.519

* Represents the Hugoniot stress for PFFE-1, PFFE-2, and PFFE-5 and represents the total

stress for experiments PFFE-3 and PFFE-4, where a Hugoniot state was not obtained.

the back surfaces of the impactor and target materials interacting at the mid-plane of the target creating a spall plane i.e., imposing a state of tension in the material. Reections will stem from the spall plane causing a tesion wave to traverse towards the free surface of the target and creating a pull back of the release structure. This pull back can be seen in Figure 2 following the release of the material. Using the pull back free surface velocity the spall strength of the material can be calculated with the expression S = 0CL u pb /2 where u pb is the pull back signal representing the difference between the peak free surface velocity and the free surface velocity following the initial release of the material. Using this relation and the measured free surface velocity proles the spall strengths were calculated and are summarized in Table 2. The results suggest the spall strength is not affected by the transition kinetics associated with the solid to solid phase transition. At this point it could be pure speculation since a steady Hugoniot stress was not established indicating that rarefaction waves attenuated the signal. This needs to be further investigated by conducting release experiments where the release behavior of the material can be examined following the phase transition and steady Hugoniot stress.

SUMMARY Well controlled impact experiments were conducted on heat-treated ES-1 steel alloy specimens to assess their Hugoniot properties. Results of these experiments indicates that the HEL for ES-1 is ~ 2.349 0.035 GPa. Upon investigating the Us u p relationship the bulk wave speed was not well captured, however, additional experiments are needed to verify this conclusion. Lastly, the spall strength of the material was found to be independent of the phase transformation kinetics. This is a work in progress and more experiments are needed to further understand both the spall and phase transition kinetics in the material.

1. Boyce, B. L., Crenshaw, T. B., and Dilmore, M. F., The strain-rate sensitivity of high-strength high-toughness steels, Tech. Rep. SAND2007-0036, Sandia National Laboratories, NM (2007). 2. Barker, L. M., and Hollenback, R. E., J. Appl. Phys., 43, 46694675 (1972). 3. Barker, L. M., and Hollenback, R. E., J. Appl. Phys., 45, 48724887 (1974).

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