Enhancement of an additive-manufactured austenitic stainless steel by post-manufacture heat-treatment

Nan Chen, Guoqiang Ma, Wanquan Zhu, Andrew William Godfrey, Zhijian Shen, Guilin Wu*, Xiaoxu Huang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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The effect of post-manufacture heat-treatment on the mechanical strength of an additively-manufactured austenitic stainless steel has been investigated. Microstructural investigations revealed that the as-manufactured material exhibited a multi-scale structure, composed of grains, cells, dislocations and nano-sized particles. Annealing at 400°C resulted in a 10% increase in yield strength, associated with the additional precipitation of a population of nano-sized silicates. Annealing at higher temperatures resulted in a decrease in strength, attributed primarily to the thermal instability of the cell structure in the as-manufactured material. The results demonstrate that by careful control of annealing conditions the structure and mechanical properties of additively-manufactured austenitic stainless steel can be optimized by post-manufacture heat-treatment.
Original languageEnglish
JournalMaterials Science and Engineering: A - Structural Materials: Properties, Microstructure and Processing
Pages (from-to)65-69
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • 316L stainless steel
  • Additive manufacturing
  • Heat-treatment
  • Mechanical properties
  • Orowan strengthening


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