Carbides in stainless steels: Results from ab initio investigations

Henriksson, K. O. E.; Sandberg, N.; Wallenius, J.
November 2008
Applied Physics Letters;11/10/2008, Vol. 93 Issue 19, p191912
Academic Journal
The useful properties of steels are due to a complicated microstructure containing iron and chromium carbides. Only some basic physical properties of these carbides are known with high precision, although the carbides may have a vital impact on the performance and longevity of the steel. To improve on this situation, we have performed extensive density-functional theory calculations of several carbides. The quantitative results are in perfect agreement with the relative empirical stability of the carbides. Also, in contradiction with experimental data, we find that Cr23C6 responsible for the hardness of stainless steels is not the most stable chromium-dominated carbide.


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