Investigating nano-precipitation in a V-containing HSLA steel using small angle neutron scattering

Y. Q. Wang, S. J. Clark, V. Janik, R. K. Heenan, D. Alba Venero, K. Yan, D. G. McCartney, S. Sridhar, P. D. Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Interphase precipitation (IPP) of nanoscale carbides in a vanadium-containing high-strength low-alloy steel has been investigated. Small angle neutron scattering (SANS) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) were employed to characterize the precipitates and their size distributions in Fe-0.047C-0.2V-1.6Mn (in wt.%) alloy samples which had been austenitized, isothermally transformed at 700 °C for between 3 and 600 min and water quenched. TEM confirms that, following heat treatment, rows of vanadium-containing nanoscale interphase precipitates were present. Model-independent analysis of the nuclear SANS signal and model fitting calculations, using oblate spheroid and disc-shapes, were performed. The major axis diameter increased from 18 nm after 3 min to 35 nm after 600 min. Precipitate volume percent increased from 0.09 to 0.22 vol% over the same period and number density fell from 2 × 1021 to 5 × 1020 m−3. A limited number of measurements of precipitate maximum diameters from TEM images showed the mean value increased from 8 nm after 5 min to 28 nm after 600 min which is in reasonable agreement with the SANS data.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)84-96
Number of pages13
JournalActa Materialia
StatePublished - Feb 15 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Microalloyed steel
  • Precipitation
  • Small angle scattering
  • Transmission electron microscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Metals and Alloys


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