Statistical analysis of oxides particles in ODS ferritic steel using advanced electron microscopy
In this work a combination of advanced transmission electron microscopy and spectroscopy techniques enabled a statistically significant analysis of various types of few nanometer size oxides particles in Fe-14Cr-2W-O.3Ti-0.3Y(2)O(3) ferritic steel. These methods include a scanning TEM with EDS and EFTEM coupled with EELS. In addition, principal component analysis was applied to the chemical maps obtained by EFTEM, which drastically improved the signal to noise ratio. Three types of particles were identified in a size range from 2 to 300 nm, namely Cr-Ti-O, Y-O and Y-Ti-O particles, with an average size of 33,16 and 8 nm, respectively. The Cr-Ti-O particles contain Y and Ti enriched zones, which were not observed previously. The EFTEM analysis showed that the titanium addition leads to formation of Y-Ti-O nanoparticles, which constitute 84% of the oxides but also precipitation of larger Cr-Ti-O. The presence of small amount of Y-O particles indicated a not sufficient amount of Ti available for reaction during mechanical alloying or consolidation. (C) 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.