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The present project, a study of the high temperature corrosion behaviour of surface engineered conventional AISI 304 stainless steel was carried out in order to optimise its resistance to oxidation at high temperatures. The goal was to extend the in-service temperature of this family of steels by surface addition of reactive elements (lanthanum and cerium).

Four different procedures for modifying the surface composition of stainless steels have been selected: spray of lanthanide-containing solutions, pyrolysis of aerosols containing rare earth elements, generation of interference layers and subsequent cation exchange with lanthanides and ion implantation. In every case the resulting surface, after oxidation in synthetic air at 1173 K for long-term periods, was characterised using a wide selection of instrumental techniques including: XRD, XPS, SEM-EDX, DRIFTS and RBS.

The addition of lanthanum and cerium, whatever the procedure, clearly enhances the high temperature oxidation behaviour of commercial AISI 304 steels. However, lanthanum addition results in a better response to oxidation. The weight gain of cerium-treated steels is at least twice that of lanthanum-treated ones. Moreover, while La-modifed steels always present a parabolic behaviour during oxidation, cerium-modified steels always present deviations from such behaviour.

Whatever the procedure of lanthanum incorporation to the steel surface, the global result is the same, that is, kinetics control with formation of oxide layers with well-defined structures and chemical compositions: Mn-Cr spinels (cubic) on the outside, Cr(2)O(3) (rombohedral) on the inside, with lanthanum located in a sandwich layer between cubic and rombohedral oxides. A SiO(2) barrier is located at the oxide-metal interface. It is proved that anionic and cationic diffusion mechanisms are controlled. It is possible to utilize the knowledge of these mechanisms to design alloys more resistant to high temperature oxidation.

Additional information

Authors: ODRIOZOLA J, Universidad de Sevilla, Avenida Americo Vespucio, Sevilla (ES);BOTELLA J, Acerinox, Poligono Industrial de Palmones, Los Barrios, Cadiz (ES);SOARES J, Universidade de Lisboa, Avenida Prof Gama Pinto (PT);LEFEBVRE S, CN RS-LMS, Lure Paris (FR)
Bibliographic Reference: EUR 19394 EN (2000), 130pp, Euro: 19.00
Availability: Available from European Commission, DG XII Communication Unit rue de la Loi/Wetstraat 200, B-1049 Bruxelles (BE) Tel: +32-2-2950001 Fax:+32-2-2958220 email:
ISBN: ISBN 92-828-9000-7
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