The occurrence of internal ductile failure in cold-headed products presents a major obstacle in the fast expanding cold heading (CH) industry. This internal failure may lead to catastrophic brittle fracture under tensile loads despite the ductile nature of the material. Comprehensive testing and investigation methodologies were used to this work to reveal the complicated interplay of process and material parameters contributing in the initiation and propagation of internal ductile failure in six CH quality AISI steel grades. The metallurgical and microscopic investigations showed that internal ductile failure occurs progressively by void nucleation and growth mechanisms with increasing plastic strain inside the highly localized adiabatic shear bands (ASBs). The void nucleation occurs by decohesion at second-phase particles, inclusion-matrix interfaces, grain boundaries and by particle or inclusion cracking. Therefore, the number and morphology of any inclusions and second-phase particles are key factors in material formability. The metallurgical investigations showed that under compressive loading conditions, the nature of the metal flow pattern promotes different rates of material flow around the inclusions and stringers which supports decohesion and void nucleation since the early stages of deformation. At advanced stages of deformation, the metal flow pattern contributes to the ASB localization in supporting void growth and coalescence along the band leading to narrow void sheets. All tested materials in this work experienced ductile failure by void nucleation and coalescence, forming cracks along the ASBs. The ductile failure of each material was the result of the contribution of all the mechanisms of void nucleation at the inclusion-matrix interface, second phase-matrix interface and at the grain boundaries. However, the level of contribution of each mechanism in the final ductile failure varied depending on material properties and their microstructure.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Ceramics and Composites
- Computer Science Applications
- Metals and Alloys
- Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering