An austempering study of ductile iron alloyed with copper
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Austempered ductile iron (ADI) has proved to be an excellent material as it possesses attractive properties: high strength, ductility and toughness are combined with good wear resistance and machinability. These properties can be achieved upon adequate heat treatment which yields the optimum microstructure for a given chemical composition. In this paper the results of an investigation the austempering of ADI alloyed with 0.45 % Cu for a range of times and temperatures are reported. The microstructure and fracture mode developed throughout these treatments have been identified by means of light and scanning electron microscopy and X-ray diffraction analysis. It was shown that the strength, elongation and impact energy strongly depend on the amounts of bainitic ferrite and retained austenite. Based on these results, and optimal processing window was established.