Mechanical Stability of Retained Austenite in Unalloyed Structural Steels of Various Carbon Content
The results of investigations on the influence of stresses on the retained austenite volume fraction in a microstructure of two unalloyed structural steels are presented in the paper. The mechanical stability of retained austenite was estimated on the bases of these results.
The relation between stress values, carbon content, retained austenite volume fraction and its stability was revealed.
It was established that the retained austenite mechanical destabilization in both examined steels depended on the applied stresses and occured in two stages. The authors observed that retained austenite present in a microstructure of steel of a smaller carbon content, regardless of its smaller fraction, was characterised by a greater mechanical stability (smaller tendency to a mechanical destabilization) than austenite in steel of a greater carbon content. It was pointed out that it was not possible to perform a complete transformation of retained austenite in the examined steels by their mechanical destabilization.