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Atomic Force Microscopy of Annealed Plain Carbon Steels

[+] Author Affiliations
Surendra Kumar Gupta, Patricia Iglesias Victoria

Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, NY

Paper No. IMECE2015-50972, pp. V014T11A015; 4 pages
  • ASME 2015 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 14: Emerging Technologies; Safety Engineering and Risk Analysis; Materials: Genetics to Structures
  • Houston, Texas, USA, November 13–19, 2015
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5757-1
  • Copyright © 2015 by ASME


Microstructure of annealed plain carbon steels is examined using optical microscopy. When the inter-lamellar spacing in pearlite is small, optical microscope at 1000X is unable to resolve the ferrite and cementite lamellae. In hyper-eutectoid steels, cementite in pearlite appears as darker phase whereas the pro-eutectoid cementite appears as a lighter phase. Atomic force microscopy (AFM) of etched steels is able to resolve ferrite and cementite lamellae in pearlite at similar magnifications. Both cementite in pearlite as well as pro-eutectoid cementite appear as raised areas (hills) in AFM images. Interlamellar spacing in pearlite increases with increasing hardenability of steel.

Copyright © 2015 by ASME



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