Effect of hydrogen on the surface energy of ferrite and austenite

Eun Ju Song, H. K. D. H. Bhadeshia and Dong-Woo Suh


Calculations indicate that the introduction of hydrogen into the body--centred cubic and face-centred cubic allotropes of iron in both cases reduces the {100} surface energy. The reduction is rather small in magnitude so this mechanism cannot present the major cause of the well-known hydrogen embrittlement phenomenon. Consistent with the theory of grain boundary embrittlement in iron, {carbon is confirmed to increase the surface energy, thereby rendering cleavage fracture less likely assuming that other factors governing fracture are maintained constant.

Corrosion Science 77 (2013) 379-384.

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hydrogen embrittlement

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