The superalloy 718 stands out for its excellent manufacturability and strength at ambient temperature. However, its application temperature is limited to about 650 °C due to the instability of the γ’’ precipitates. Here, we provide an in-depth account of an alloy development concept, allowing for the design of superalloys with 718-type properties, yet with a significantly improved microstructural stability. The article begins with a detailed discussion on how the microstructural and chemical composition must be altered to achieve this objective. Then, model alloys were used to explore and validate the outlined strategy. Finally, it is shown how these considerations ultimately led to a new 718-type superalloy with far more improved microstructural stability— namely, VDM Alloy 780. The introduction of a large amount of Co as a substitute for Fe (and partially Ni) is the most important element of our alloy development concept in terms of chemical composition. The most important microstructural feature is the introduction of low solvus temperature, high misfit γ´-strengthening, replacing γ´´-hardening.
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