Effects of short-time tempering on mechanical properties and fracture of 4340 steel
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Steel is commonly processed via quenching the high temperature austenite phase to form martensite, a microstructure that exhibits high strength with limited ductility and toughness. As-quenched martensite is typically tempered to achieve varying combinations of strength and ductility/toughness, where strength decreases and ductility/toughness increases with higher tempering temperatures and longer tempering times. However, a phenomenon known as tempered martensite embrittlement (TME) produces a decrease in impact toughness at room temperature in the tempering range of 200 to 400 C for typical ...