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Achromealternativeforcorrosiveenvironments

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Achromealternativeforcorrosiveenvironments
ByM.Woods,T.DamirgiandE.Rolinski,AdvancedHeatTreatCorp.
Thu,2015031213:20

Environmentallimitationsontheusageofhexchromecoatings1haveyieldedmanyalternativecoatings
andsurfacetreatmentsforhydraulicandpneumaticcylinderpistonrods.Pistonrodsurfacesneedto
havelowcoefficientoffrictionandresistwearfromabrasion,erosionandsliding.Buttheyalsomustbe
resistanttocorrosion2 .

Destructionofthegalvanicallyplatedchromium
coatings,stillusedfrequently,occursthroughspalling.
Thisdisqualifiesmanyengineeringcomponentsfrom
theirapplications.Tothecontrary,nitridedcomponentstypicallydevelopcorrosionspots,andalthough
thosecanbecleanedoffwithoutaffectingperformanceofthepartsforalongtime,theymaystillleadto
prematurefailure.Enhancingcorrosionresistanceofthenitrided/nitrocarburizedlayersbypost
oxidizingisasignificantstepinfurtherenhancingperformanceoftheparts.Werecentlydeveloped
UltraOxtomeetandexceedthoserequirements.Thetreatmentcombinescontrollableferritic
nitrocarburizing(FNC)carriedouteitherbygasorplasmamethodwithpostoxidizingandproprietary
impregnationstep,allcarriedoutinthesameshop3.Thenewtechnologyisanalternativetoothermuch
morecomplexmethodssuchasMeloniteQPQ,TeniferQ,Nitrotecandotherprocesses1.UltraOxhas
beendevelopedusinganewapproachtothecommonproblembyemphasizingmicrostructurecorrosion
correlation5.Manyactualandpotentialapplicationsoftheprocessareinthefieldofhydraulicsand
pneumatics.
Characteristicsofthelayers
ChromiumplatingcanproduceamonolithiclayerontopofthesteelcomponentasshowninFigure1A.
Thelayerhassignificanthardnessintherangeof800900HK(6570HRCequivalent)anditisplated
overacomparativelysoftsteelbase,Figure1B.Asitcanbenoticed,gradientofthehardnessisvery
sharpatthesurfaceandthismaynotbeaverypreferredstressprofileinmanyapplications.Tothe
contrary,compoundlayerpresentinthenitrocarburizedlayer(Figures2Aand2B)issupportedbythe
diffusionzone,whichexhibitsasmoothtransitionofthehardness.Compoundzoneisnotacoatinglike
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4/26/2015

Achromealternativeforcorrosiveenvironments

thechromiumlayer.Tothecontrary,itisformedbydiffusionofnitrogenandcarboninthesteel.
Therefore,thereisnoproblemwithitsadhesiontosteel.Ithasbeenproventhatthechromiumplated
layerhasmicrocracks,andbecauseofthat,flakingmightoccurifthedirectionofslidingisnot
perpendiculartothecrack7,8.
The

UltraOxtreatmentassuresveryestheticlookoftheparts,Figure3.Theblackappearanceofthesurface
isachievedwithaspecialpostoxidizingstepcarriedoutafterFNCinthesamefurnace.Inlieuofthe
color,surfacehardnessofthecomponentissignificantlyincreased.Thisisextremelyimportantsince
mostofthefailuresstartatthesurface1.Itcanbenotedamultizonecharacterofthenearsurface
region.TheouterzoneisbuiltofFe304(magnetite),andthezonedirectlyunderneathisthetwophase
compoundzone.Bothofthesezonesaresaturatedwiththeproprietarysealantduringthepost
impregnationstep.Coatingusedforimpregnatingactsasanelectricalbarrier,protectingtheinterface
solidsolutionfromelectronictransferofthespecies,i.e.protectsfromelectrochemicalreactionwhichis
alsocalledelectrochemicalcorrosion.Thezonebelowisverycompactsinceithasironreachnitride
containinglessnitrogenthantheintermediate,porouszone.
Applicationexamples
UltraOxisnotonlyanenvironmentallyfriendly
processbutalsoallowsforuniformallovertreatment
ofthesteelcomponent.Therefore,itismoreversatile
thanhardchromiumplating,sothereisnoshadowing
effectfromconnectingelectrodes.Partsofany
geometrycanbetreated.Someofthepartstreatedby
AdvancedHeatTreatCorp.arealsoofsignificantsize,
suchaspistonrodsforskidsteerloadersandother
offhighwayequipment.Otherpartsarequitesmall
anddetailed,suchastheoutertubeforanindustrial
shockabsorber,Figure3.DurabilityoftheUltraOx
layerisatleasttwiceofthechromiumplatedcoating.Manyactualandpotentialapplicationsofthe
processareinthefieldofhydraulicsandpneumatics.
M.Woods,T.DamirgiandE.Rolinski,AdvancedHeatTreatCorp.arewithAdvanceHeatTreatCorp.,
Waterloo,Iowa.Formoreinformation,call(319)232.5221orvisitwww.ahtweb.com.
References
1.EPA,DraftToxicologicalReviewofHexChromium:InSupportofSummaryInformationonthe
IntegratedRiskInformationSystem(IRIS).75Fed.Reg.60454(2010),www.phoneline.com,May2011.
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2.J.Spies,Chapter6inE.J.MittemeijerandJ.Somers,ThermochemicalSurfaceEngineeringofSteels,
EdWoodheadPublishing,2014.
3.M.Woods,UltraOxTreatment,TradeName,2012.
4.M.L.Doche,V.Meynie,H.Mazille,C.DeramixandP.Jacquot,Improvementsofthecorrosion
resistanceoflowpressurenitridedandpostoxidizedsteelsbyapolymerimpregnationfinaltreatment,
SurfaceandCoatingsTechnology,154,(2002),pp.113123.
5.J.A.Segui,SimulationLedStrategyforCorrosionPrevention,Corrosion/MaterialsScience,Comsol
News,2014,pp.36A38A.
6.K.R.Newby,Industrial(Hard)ChromiumPlating,MetalsHanbookVol.5,SurfaceEngineering,Ed.
ASMIntl.1994,pp.177191.
7.ZhenkunYang,Alternativestohardchromiumplatingonpistonrods.
8.M.KeshavarzHedayat,Comparisonofconventionalandactivescreenplasmanitridingofhard
chromiumelectroplatedsteel.Elsevier,2009
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