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Comparison of the Microstructure of M2 Steel Fabricated by Continuous Casting and with a Sand Mould

1
College of Materials Science and Engineering, Taiyuan University of Technology, Taiyuan 030024, China
2
Technology Center, Taiyuan Iron & Steel (Group) Co., Taiyuan 030003, China
3
National Engineering and Research Center for Continuous Casting Technology, Center Iron and Steel Institute, Beijing 100081, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Metals 2019, 9(5), 560; https://doi.org/10.3390/met9050560
Received: 28 April 2019 / Revised: 9 May 2019 / Accepted: 10 May 2019 / Published: 13 May 2019
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Abstract

AISI M2 steel was smelted in a 150 kg medium-frequency induction furnace and cast to form round billets with a cross-section diameter of 100 mm via a vertical continuous caster and sand mold. The secondary dendrite arm spacing (λ2), cooling rates, permeability and size and distribution of grains and network carbides of the two billets were studied. The results show that the continuous casting process can effectively decrease the λ2 value, permeability and size of the grains and carbides and improve the distribution of the grains and carbides during solidification. The λ2 values of the billets cast with a sand mold and continuous caster are 37.34 μm and 21.14 μm, respectively, and the cooling rate is 3.6 K·s−1 and 12.0 K·s−1, respectively. The area fractions of carbides at the center of the billets cast with the sand mold and continuous caster are 0.24 and 0.16, respectively, and increase by 27.7% and 25.4%, respectively, compared with their average values. The average grain size of billets cast with the sand mold and continuous caster is 69.4 μm and 50.5 μm, respectively. Compared with the sand mold billet, the grain size at the center of the continuous casting billet is reduced by 25.5%. The relationship between the grain size and cooling rate is presented in this paper. View Full-Text
Keywords: M2 high-speed steel; continuous casting; cooling rate; microstructure; grain size M2 high-speed steel; continuous casting; cooling rate; microstructure; grain size
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Zhang, J.; Zhao, Z.; Wang, W.; Wang, Y. Comparison of the Microstructure of M2 Steel Fabricated by Continuous Casting and with a Sand Mould. Metals 2019, 9, 560.

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