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Research Article

Effect of cathodic potential on stress corrosion cracking behavior of 21Cr2NiMo steel in simulated seawater

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  • Received: 22 May 2020Revised: 17 September 2020Accepted: 21 September 2020Available online: 25 September 2020
  • This study aims at providing systematically insights into the impact of cathodic polarization on the stress corrosion cracking (SCC) behavior of 21Cr2NiMo steel. Slow stress tensile test demonstrated that 21Cr2NiMo steel is highly sensitive to hydrogen embrittlement at strong cathodic polarization. The lowest SCC susceptibility is presented at -775 mVSCE whereas the SCC susceptibility increased remarkably below -950 mVSCE. SEM and EBSD revealed that cathodic potential decline causes a transition in fracture path from transgranular mode to intergranular mode. The intergranular mode transforms from bainite boundaries separation to prior austenitic grain boundaries separation when more cathodically polarized. Furthermore, corrosion pits promoted the nucleation of SCC cracks. In conclusion, the SCC mechanism transforms from the coexistence of hydrogen embrittlement mechanism and anodic dissolution mechanism to typical hydrogen embrittlement mechanism with applied potential decreases.
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Effect of cathodic potential on stress corrosion cracking behavior of 21Cr2NiMo steel in simulated seawater

  • Corresponding authors:

    Zhi-yong Liu    E-mail: liuzhiyong7804@ustb.edu.cn

    Cui-wei Du    E-mail: dcw@ustb.edu.cn

  • 1. Corrosion and Protection Center, University of Science and Technology Beijing, Beijing 10083, China
  • 2. Zhengmao Group Co., Ltd., Zhenjiang 212000, China

Abstract: This study aims at providing systematically insights into the impact of cathodic polarization on the stress corrosion cracking (SCC) behavior of 21Cr2NiMo steel. Slow stress tensile test demonstrated that 21Cr2NiMo steel is highly sensitive to hydrogen embrittlement at strong cathodic polarization. The lowest SCC susceptibility is presented at -775 mVSCE whereas the SCC susceptibility increased remarkably below -950 mVSCE. SEM and EBSD revealed that cathodic potential decline causes a transition in fracture path from transgranular mode to intergranular mode. The intergranular mode transforms from bainite boundaries separation to prior austenitic grain boundaries separation when more cathodically polarized. Furthermore, corrosion pits promoted the nucleation of SCC cracks. In conclusion, the SCC mechanism transforms from the coexistence of hydrogen embrittlement mechanism and anodic dissolution mechanism to typical hydrogen embrittlement mechanism with applied potential decreases.

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