The main objective of this study was to develop an efficient coating to increase the wear resistance of cold work die steel at different temperatures. The microstructures of high-velocity oxygen-fuel (HVOF)-sprayed WC-CoCr coatings were evaluated using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The effect of temperature on the tribological properties of the coatings and the reference Cr12MoV cold work die steel were both investigated by SEM, environmental scanning electron microscopy (ESEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD), and a pin-on-disk high-temperature tribometer. The coating exhibited a significantly lower wear rate and superior resistance against sliding wear as compared to the die steel at each test temperature, whereas no major differences in terms of the variation tendency of the friction coefficient as a function of temperature were observed in both the coatings and the die steels. These can be attributed to the presence of nanocrystalline grains and the fcc-Co phase in the coating. Moreover, the wear mechanisms of the coatings and the die steels were compared and discussed. The coating presented herein provided a competitive approach to improve the sliding wear performance of cold work die steel.
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