Corrosion resistance of AISI 316L stainless steel nitrided by three different plasma assisted techniques.
Brühl, Sonia Patricia
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Plasma assisted surface modification methods have been used to nitride stainless steels in order to enhance hardness and therefore the lifetime of industrial componentes. Nevertheless, the corrosion resistance is not always preserved since it thermochemical diffusion techniques. AISI 316L stainless steel was plsma nitrided using three different techniques: Low Energy Ion Implantation (LEII), Plasma Immersion Implantation (PI3) and conventional DC pulsed plasma nitriding (DCPN). For each method several parameters were tested and some of them were selected to achieve the so called S phase of about e um thickness and no nitrides precipitation. The nitrided layer was characterized with OM and SEM. Hardness was assessed on the surface with Vickers indenter and 25 g load. XRD was performed to characterize the S phase and to detect other phases if present and electrochemical corrosion tests were carried out in 3,5% NaCI solution. Although the S phase thickness in the three groups of samples was comparable, hardness was not and neither was the corrosion resistance. The PI3 samples were the hardest with the best performance in corrosion experiments, resulting in a higher breakdown potential and lower currents.
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