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Welding International 2004 18 (7) 543549

Selected from Rivista Italiana della Saldatura 2003 44 (4) 469477; Reference RI/03/4/469; Translation 3286

Developments in the welding of supermartensitic stainless


steels: recent developments and applications
doi:10.1533/wint.2004.3286

M G O L D S C H M I T Z, L K A R L S S O N , R P E D E R S E N, S R I G D A L
and J V A N D E N B R O E K
ESAB, Sweden

The recent introduction of supermartensitic stainless


steels on the market constitutes a valid economic
alternative to many applications in the oil and gas industry.
These steels offer sufficient resistance to corrosion in
the presence of light or medium acid aggression, together
with high resistance and good resilience values at low
temperature. 1,2 Moreover, supermartensitic steels are
easily welded on site, where pre-heating treatments and
long treatment times following welding (PWHT) are not
practical.
For a material to be used successfully, welding must
be possible in a reliable and economical manner and,
among other things, it must be capable of satisfying
resistance requirements. For example, reeling is a common
operation in the case of laying offshore lines which results
in curving of the tubes, introducing noticeable plastic
deformations. The use of support materials with less
resistance to the base metal determines localised stress
on the welding. On the contrary, support materials of
similar supermartensitic composition are preferred for this
reason in current and future projects, ensuring the
overcoming of yield values.
In recent years, there has been a significant development
in the field of matching support materials and our
understanding of the relationships between chemical
composition, microstructure and properties has increased
substantially. 3,8 In any event, the development of more
optimised consumables and ever more economical welding
procedures remains a stimulating area of activity. This
article presents the application of matching consumables
in GMAW orbital welding in 5G narrow gap down position

from supermartensitic pipes and longitudinal welding of


20 inch tubes. The procedures for welding and their
features are discussed, from which it is evident that
supermartensitic support materials can be used with
concrete welding procedures to produce high quality
welding with satisfactory features. At the end of this
article, the authors present some experiences of
heterogeneous welding between supermartensitic and
super duplex steels. The advantages and disadvantages
of the use of different support materials are discussed in
terms of weldability, mechanical properties and resistance
to corrosion.
Features of the supermartensitic deposit
The first section of this article will discuss the welding
of supermartensitic steel tubing using support material
of a similar composition. Inevitably, the level of dilution
with the base metal influences the features of the deposit.
For reference and information purposes, Tables 1 and 2
present the mechanical features and typical chemical
composition of deposits from all support material,
deposited with metal cored wires taken from the same
commercial supermartensitic steel. The wires deposit a
completely martensitic structure of 13% Cr, associated
with Mo, with very low carbon, quite appropriate for the
welding of supermartensitic steels.
OK Tubrod 15.53 and 15.53S wires are advised for the
welding of steels up to 1.5% Mo, whereas OK 15.55 and
15.55S should be used in the case of higher levels of
Mo. The metal deposited is appropriate for use in various

Table 1 Typical chemical composition (in weight, %) of all contribution metal deposited with animate metal cored
wire of matching composition
C

Si

Mn

Cr

Ni

Mo

Cu

<0.01
<0.01

<0.01
<0.01

0.8
0.8

1.2
1.1

12.5
12

6.8
6.8

1.5
1.5

0.5
0.5

<0.01
<0.01

<0.01
<0.01

0.4
0.5

1.8
1.6

12.5
12

6.7
6.7

2.5
2.5

0.5
0.5

1 . 5 % Mo , me ta l c o re d wire s:
O K Tub ro d 1 5 . 5 3 *
O K Tub ro d 1 5 . 5 3 5 * *
2 . 5 % Mo , me ta l c o re d wire s:
O K Tub ro d 1 5 . 5 5 *
O K Tub ro d 1 5 . 5 5 5 * *

* GMAW p ulsa te with p ro te c tio n o f Ar + 3 0 % He a nd GTAW with Ar o r Ar + He


* * S AW with O K flux 1 0 . 9 3

544

doi:10.1533/wint.2004.3286

Goldschmitz et al

Table 2 Typical mechanical features is condition as welded

Re silie nc e (J)

Re sista nc e fe a ture s

4 0 C

Rp0.2 (MP a )

Ha rd ne ss
( HV1 0 )

We ld ing
me tho d

>15
> 1 0 (2 )
> 5 (2 )

< 3 5 0 (3 )
< 3 5 0 (3 )
< 3 5 0 (3 )

GTAW
GMAW
S AW

>15
> 1 0 (2 )
> 5 (2 )

< 3 5 0 (3 )
< 3 5 0 (3 )
< 3 5 0 (3 )

GTAW
GMAW
S AW

C o nsuma b le s
2 0 C

Rm (MP a )

AS ( % )

1 . 5 % MO , me ta l c o re d a nima te wire s
O K Tub ro d 1 5 . 5 3 /A
O K Tub ro d 1 5 . 3 3 / Ar+ 3 0 %He
O K Tub ro d 1 5 . 5 3 S /O K F lux 1 0 . 9 3

>100
> 4 0 (1 )
> 3 0 (1 )

> 11 0
> 5 0 (1 )
> 3 5 (1 )

700850
700850
700850

9501050
9501050
9501050

2 . 5 % Mo , me ta l c o re d a nima te wire s
O K Tub ro d 1 5 . 5 5 /Ar
O K Tub ro d 1 5 . 5 5 / Ar+ 3 0 %He
O K Tub ro d 1 5 . 5 3 S / O K F lux 1 0 . 9 3

>100
> 4 0 (1 )
> 3 0 (1 )

> 11 0
> 5 0 (1 )
> 3 5 (1 )

700850
700850
700850

9501050
9501050
9501050

(1 ) A P W HT a t 8 5 0 6 2 0 C , a c c o rd ing to time (5 3 0 min) will inc re a se re silie nc e va lue s typ ic a lly b y 2 0 - 1 0 0 %.


(2 ) A d e ga sific a tio n tre a tme nt a t 2 5 0 C fo r 1 6 h o r a P W HT a t 5 8 0 6 2 0 C will inc re a se the le nthe ning b y > 1 5 %.
(3 ) A P W HT a t 8 5 0 6 2 0 C , a c c o rd ing to time (5 3 0 min) will inc re a se re silie nc e va lue s typ ic a lly b y 2 0 5 0 HV1 0 .

conditions both as welded and after thermal hardening


treatment and/or tempering, according to the resilience
and hardness required.
The protective gases recommended for GMAW welding
are Ar+30%He or Ar+0.5%CO2. It is possible to use gas
with higher levels of CO2, which will result in increasing
the deposit of C and O, thereby increasing the hardness
of the deposit. For the GTAW weld, pure Ar or a mixture
of Ar+He must be used.
Orbital welding of narrow gap tubes
The orbital welding end point of tubes is generally referred
to the system used when it is necessary to weld the
pipes in a fixed position. In any event, the end point can
lead astray in the case of GMAW/FCAW proceedings.
If the tube is in a horizontal position, the weld will be
made both using a double ascendant technique (from six
oclock to twelve oclock clockwise, followed by from
twelve oclock to six oclock anti-clockwise), and with a
double descendant technique (from twelve oclock to
six oclock clockwise, followed by from twelve oclock
to six oclock anti-clockwise). The metal-cored MCW
wires only form little islands of silicate on the surface of
the solidified bath, which can be removed by brushing
between the various coats or more simply by coating
the weld over again, as they are re-welded and float above
the surface of the bath. Thus, the MCW wires are very
appropriate, both for their double ascendant technique
and double descendant technique. For multi-positional
welding, a generator with a pulsating arch is preferable
in order to be able to obtain an appropriate transfer of
condensation and better control of the bath.
With a correct conformation of the seam, the double
descendant technique allows a relatively high
advancement value, approximately 3875 cm/min. In order
to obtain a better control of the bath with this descending
speed, a valid technique is to conform the J seam to
narrow gap. In that case, the seam is tight enough to

allow every coat to succeed in uniting the two sides


without requiring oscillation, with the exception of the
closing coat in which slight cogging is necessary to
complete the seam.
Welding experiences
Four producers have participated in a collaborative project
to evaluate the effects of the new wires on supermartensitic
material for pipes and to establish the acceptability of
orbital welding procedure for the pipeline. A J narrow
gap preparation has been chosen without air at the root
(Fig. 1).
Expandable tweezers, with a backwards support in
copper rod, have been used to ensure alignment precision
and a uniform penetration in the deep coat. For testing,
the Pipeliner System by Magantech has been adopted,
interfaced by an ESAB Aristo LUD 320W generator.
The Aristo LUD320W is a synergy generator, which
means that there exists a pre-programmed relationship
between pulsation parameters, power given and speed.

1 The preparation of the J joint in narrow gap requires a


slight abutment.

doi:10.1533/wint.2004.3286

Supermartensitic stainless steels

545

Table 3 Typical welding parameters: 99.5% Ar/0.5% CO2; no backwards gas (welding against brass rod); total welding time: 14
minutes
P ass

P o sitio n

C urre nt (A)

Te nsio n (V)

Wire a d va nc e me nt We ld ing sp e e d
(m/min)
(c m/min)

Ro o t
F illing 2 , 3 , 4
C lo sure
Ro o t
F illing 2 , 3
C lo sure

1 2 4 o ' c lo c k
1 2 4 o ' c lo c k
1 2 6 o ' c lo c k
4 6 o ' c lo c k
4 6 o ' c lo c k
1 2 6 o ' c lo c k

210
215
140
178
175
140

18.8
21.5
18
17.5
17.5
18

9.3
9.0
3.0
6.0
6.0
3.0

For the MCW wire (OK Tubrod 15.55 diameter 1.2 mm), a
new synergy programme has been imposed.
The NKK has provided tube samples of 32 mm (12
inches) NKK-CR13WS2.5 (13Cr6.5Ni2.5Mo) with a
width of 14.6 mm.
Some test welds have been made to perfect a welding
procedure (Table 3). 11
Figures 2 and 3 illustrate the smooth aspect of the
closure coat and the excellent fusion of the sides. For
the filling coats, it has not been necessary to use any
cogging to obtain a reliable fusion of the sides, thereby
allowing a greater speed of advancement with high

2 Closure of the orbital weld in the supermartensitic steel


tube.

70
50
18
22
22
18

productivity and low defect levels.


It has been clearly demonstrated that, with the
appropriate system, welding can be made efficient and
reliable using MCW wire and a J narrow gap seam.
Welding properties
The resistance values and features have been determined
internally, preparing a traction specimen and five ISO-V
Charpy transversal samples for the weld. 11
The break in the traction specimen (21.1 12.9 mm)
occurred in the metal base of the tube at 900 MPa,
indicative of overmatching. Resilience has been verified
at 40 C as welded and after a brief PWHT at 600 C.
The thermal treatment was undertaken in a Gleebe welding
simulator (electrical resistance heater) with rapid heating
followed by five minutes maintenance and air cooling.
The individual Charpy values were 44, 41 and 42 Joules
in the as welded condition and 50 and 52 Joules after
PWHT, which highlights the benefits of brief PWHT.
The oxygen content in the metal deposited has been
measured, as its notable influence on the features of
resilience of the supermartensitic deposits is well known.12
The levels of 285350 pm noted are easily achieved with
the resilience values, in line with recent studies, 12 which
suggest that there is potential for a further increase,
improving the protection gas. This is possible using a
special nozzle in combination with a specially designed
diffuser or 100% inert gas.
The results of additional tests made to the TWI 13 are
in line with the aforementioned controls. Transversal
traction tests have confirmed the breakage of the base
metal. The yield load on all metal deposited was 680
MPa and the break load was 923 MPa after PWHT at 637
C for five minutes. The average resilience value
determined after PWHT at 651661 C for five minutes
was 47 Joules. SSCC Sulphide Stress Corrosion Cracking
(SSCC) tests were conducted on four lap point specimens
for 30 days in slightly acidic formation water and
condensation water (10 mbar H 2 S) which have not
highlighted susceptibility to SSCC.
Longitudinal welding of tubing

3 Section of the narrow gap orbital weld which illustrates the


excellent fusion of the sides. A slight cogging is only
necessary for the closing coat. The total welding time for the
12 inch tubing (width 14.6 mm) is approximately 14 minutes.

The production of large diameter tubing in supermartensitic


steel, ranging from 18 inches (475 mm) to 30 inches (760
mm) with a width of up to 30 mm, involves the longitudinal
welding of the same. Normally, both the inside and the
outside are submerged arc welded, which implies the

546

doi:10.1533/wint.2004.3286

Goldschmitz et al

4 Longitudinal section of weld (width 20 mm).

necessity of de-seaming the deep coat to eliminate the


risk of defects or cracks.
The arc plasma welding is a high energy density process
capable of producing high quality welding with the
'keyhole' technique and for that reason it is indicated for
deep coats, with SAW welding for the filling and closure
coats. We have continued to avoid the necessity for
backwards cracks in order to increase productivity and
thereby reduce costs.
Description of the welding technique
The longitudinal welding test was made by EEW
(Erndtebrcker Eisenwerk, GmbH and Co. KG) using base
material in 12Cr4.5Ni steel to obtain a 20 inch tube (508
mm external diameter) and 20 mm width. The machine
production, forming and welding did not present problems,
although there was more evident magnetism present than
in the welding of tests of sheet metals. In any event, the
correct precautions were taken and the difficulty was
overcome. The weld was made in an X joint using arc
plasma with OK Tubrod 15.53 diameter 1.20 mm wire for
the deep coat. The filler coats were deposited both
externally and internally in SAW with the combination
of OK Tubrod 15.53S diameter wire 2.4 mm and OK Flux
10.93 flow (Fig. 4).
The thermal contribution was maintained in the range
of 1.01.7 kL/mm for the submerged arc, whereas for
plasma welding it was slightly higher.
The interpass temperature was maintained below
150 C and 30 minute post heating occurred at 630 C,
followed by air cooling.
Microstructure and mechanical features
The microstructures of the welded joint, including the
fused area, the thermically altered area and the base metal,
achieved after PWHT tempering, are visible in Figure 5.
The hardness and resilience in the fused area were
comparable to those of the thermically altered area (Tables
4 and 5). For example, the maximum hardness in the fused
area was 278 HV10, whereas the maximum hardness on
the line of fusion was 280 HV10. The lowest levels of
Charpy-V resilience were found in welding in the high
dilution region at half width, with an average of 62 J at
40 C. In the fused zone, localising the specimen on

5 Microstructure of tube welded longitudinally: a) base


material; b) area of the line of fusion; c) fused area.

the external surface, a slight increase was noted (70 J at


40 C), similar to the 7779 J measured in the thermically
altered zone in the area of the line of fusion. The resistance
features were higher in the high dilution region at half
width and slightly less, but nonetheless they were still
greater than those of the base metal, near the external
surface (Table 6).
The resistance and resilience values of the welded
joint are well in line with the previous tests on all support
metal after PWHT for 30 minutes at 620 C.8
Table 4 Hardness in the longitudinal welding of the tubing,
treatment after welding at 630 C for 30 minutes
Ha rd ne ss (HV1 0 )
P o sitio n
Ba se ma te ria l
F usio n line
F use d line

Min

Ma x

233
242
264

263
280
278

Table 5 Charpy V resilience (J at 40 C) of tubing welded


longitudinally, treated after welding at 630 C for 30 minutes
Inta glio p o sitio n
S p e c ime n
p o sitio n

O utsid e
Ha lf wid th

F use d
a re a

FL

FL

FL

Ba se
me ta l

70
62

77
87

79
70

77
123

104
102

doi:10.1533/wint.2004.3286

Supermartensitic stainless steels

Table 6 Resistance features of the longitudinal welding after


PWHT at 630 C for 30 minutes

Welding procedure
Supermartensitic steel tubes (K-X80-CD13WS2, external
diameter 324 mm, width 16 mm), have been welded with
super duplex tubes (UNS 32760, external diameter 335
mm, width 22 mm) using the GTAW method.
The welding was done at Arctos Industrier AS of
Sandefjord in Norway using nickel base Alloy 59 type
support materials (SG-NiCr23Mo16, dia. 2 mm) and super
duplex support materials (EN12072 G/W 25 9 4 N L, 2 and
2.4 mm dia.). The composition of the base materials and
the contribution materials is indicated in Table 7.
The welding was made with the tubes fixed in a
horizontal position. The seam was prepared in a V with
2 mm of cyanophryn air for nickel base consumables and
34 mm of air using super duplex contribution material.
Ar pure protective gas was also used for backwards
protection. In the case of welding with super duplex
consumables, it was possible to adopt a certain increase
in interpass temperature (150 C max) and thermal
contribution (0.91.2 kJ/mm) where, with the Ni base
contribution material, the interpass has been maintained
below 100 C and thermal contribution between 0.91.1
kJ/mm. Approximately 45 coats were necessary to
complete the seam with the Ni base consumable, whereas
with the super duplex, only 35 were needed.

Lo ngitud ina l re sista nc e fe a ture s

S p e c ime n
p o sitio n
O utsid e
Ha lf wid th

Rp0.2 (MP a )

Rm (MP a )

AS ( % )

880
954

974
1001

15
16

The Table 2 recommendation advises 580620 C as


optimal temperatures, based on tests which indicate the
formation of new martensitic during the cooling from PWHT
temperatures of 640 C or more. In any event, this
experiment suggests that a slightly higher temperature
could have a positive effect on material at 1.5% Mo in
order to maximise tenacity. An accurate control of
temperature is recommended, as previous studies have
demonstrated a rapid degeneration of yield values,
resilience and lengthening, if too much martensitic is
not intercepted and residual austenite is present in the
microstructure. 8
Heterogeneous seams
The execution of seams for the welding of materials which
are dissimilar from one another is not infrequent in oil
and gas industry process systems, as the temperatures
and corrosive nature of the vehicles can vary. Thus, it
is necessary to use different materials for different
components. An interesting heterogeneous combination
involves the welding of supermartensitic steel pipes with
super duplex steel of a different width. The following
sections briefly describe two recent examples from
Norwegian offshore projects, where contribution materials
have been used with Ni and super duplex base.

Inspection controls
The welding has been subjected to an intense testing
programme, including non-destructive, micrographic,
transversal and longitudinal traction tests, at laboratory
temperature and at 115 C, Charpy V tests at 46 C, lap
tests, measuring of hardness and SSCC tests.
X-ray examinations and sections of the welding have
not indicated defects and the microstructure has been
judged to be healthy. However, one comment can be

Table 7 Chemical composition (% weight) of the base material of the contribution tubes and wires used for heterogeneous
joints

S up e rma rte nsitic tub e


Dup le x tub e
O K Tigro d 1 9 . 8 1
O K Tigro d 1 6 . 8 8 *

Si

Mn

Cr

Ni

Mo

Cu

Fe

0.015
0.017
0.003
<0.003

0.012
0.23

0.25

0.2
0.36
0.05
0.5

0.17
0.68
0.2
0.5

12.3
25.6
22.8
25.0

5.9
7.5
re ma ind e r
9.5

2.2
3.5
15.4
5.0

0.6

0.05
0.6

re ma ind e r
re ma ind e r
0.4
re ma ind e r

* Typ ic a l a na lysis o n a ll me ta l d e p o site d .

Table 8 Resistance features of welds between dissimilar materials

Lo ngitud ina l re sista nc e fe a ture s o n a ll d e p o site d

Tra nsve rsa l tra c tio n

C o nsuma b le
N i b ase
S up e r d up le x

547

Rp0.2 (MP a )

Rm (MP a )

AS ( % )

Rm (MP a )

Bre a k a ge p o sitio n

+ 2 0 C
+ 11 5 C
+ 2 0 C

589
510
744

818
726
879

37

25

864
780
843

+ 11 5 C

608

763

738

S up e rma rte nsitic tub e


S up e rma rte nsitic tub e
S up e rma rte nsitic tub e o r
S up e r d up le x tub e *
S up e rma rte nsitic tub e

* Thre e fra c ture d sp e c ime ns in the sup e rma rte nsitic b a se ma te ria l a nd o ne in the sup e r d up le x b a se ma te ria l

548

doi:10.1533/wint.2004.3286

Goldschmitz et al

made: the microscope has indicated some precipitation


of nitrides and secondary austenite in the thermically
altered zone of the super duplex pipes welded with Ni
base consumables.
A ferrite content ranging from 30.4% at the root to
51.5% on the surface has been found in super duplex
welding and there is no comment to be made regarding
the microstructure of the thermically altered zone.
Testing of mechanical features
Breakage load and yield of the Ni base welding resulted
less than those carried out with the super duplex, both
at room temperature and at high temperature (Table 8).
However, the breakage in the transversal tractions has
always taken place in base material, without concern for
support material and testing temperature. It should be
noted that the resistance of the super duplex welding is
more significantly reduced with the increase in
temperature than the welding done with nickel wire. For
example, when increased from 20 C to 115 C, the yield
is reduced by 136 MPa for super duplex and only 79 MPa
for Ni welding.
Both of the welds have passed the lap test at 180
front and back (mandrel 5 width for Ni base welding
and 4 width for super duplex). The testing of the
hardnesses on the section of the welding was conducted
at 1.5mm below the surface line, in the high zone and at
the root, and has highlighted a very similar behaviour of
the two contribution materials. The highest levels were
found in the supermartensitic tube in the thermically
altered zone (up to 380 HV10) and the hardnesses were
higher at the root than at the top. The average value of
the metal deposited by the Ni consumable was 325 HV
10 at the top and 314 HIV 10 at the root, whereas for that
deposited by super duplex, the values were respectively
281 HV10 and 319 HV10. The hardnesses measured in
the thermically altered zone of the super duplex tube
have given results in the range of 325345 HV10.
The Charpy V resiliencies have been noted using
standard 10 10 mm specimens extracted from various
locations close to the surface of the high zone and the
root (Table 9). The values were good in both of the
welds. The lowest average values were 87 J in the line of
fusion of the super duplex tube welded with the Ni base
wire. The resilience noted in the fused zone gave values
from 112 J to 141 J in the Ni base deposit and from 114 J
to 196 J in the super duplex base deposit. The resilience

of the supermartensitic base metal has typically provided


values higher than 200 J, whereas the super duplex base
metal has given values from 87 J to 157 J.
SSCC Tests
The resistance to fatigue corrosion cracks has been
verified in accordance with the EFC No. 17 document
and the Norsk Hydro 33-1A-NH-R52-00002 specifications.
The tests have been conducted at laboratory temperature
in condensation water (1,000 mg/l Na Cl, 400 mg/l Na Ac,
pH balanced at 3.6 with HCI or NaOH) and formation
water (38890 mg/l Na Cl, 400 mg/l Na Ac, pH balanced at
5.2 with HCI or NaOH) at a partial pressure of 4 mbar of
H 2S. Some specimens have been prepared at constant
load and four lap points, transversal to the welding in
the internal surface of the tubes. The specimens at a
constant load from the Ni base welding have only been
verified in condensation water. In any event, the
specimens with four lap points of the two welds, together
with those at constant load from the super duplex welding,
have been verified both in condensation water and
formation water. The samples with four lap points have
been subject to 100% of the yield value of the deposit
and those at a constant load at 90% of the yield load,
keeping them for a period of 30 days.
Both of the welds have given very similar values. No
crack has been found on either of the samples in both
atmospheres. The conclusion is that all the samples have
coated the SSCC test. However, some points of localised
corrosion have been noted on the final part of the
supermartensitic side of the samples tested in formation
water. A localised attack has also been noted on the
edge of the specimen with four lap points, from the Ni
base welding, in the test in formation water. A similar
attachment had also been found in the supermartensitic
base metal.

Concluding observations
As has been demonstrated above, supermartensitic
contribution materials of analogous base metal composition
are suited both to longitudinal and orbital welding of
pipes. There exist different options for heterogeneous
welding of supermartensitic material with super duplex
and the choice must be made according to the specific
application.

Table 9 Charpy V resilience (J at 40 C) of heterogeneous welding of supermartensitic and super duplex steel

Inta glio p o sitio n


C o nsuma b le

S p e c ime n p o sitio n
F usio n zo ne

N i b ase
S up e rd up le x

He ight
Ro o t
He ight
Ro o t

11 2
141
196
11 4

S up e rma rte nsitic tub e

S up e r d up le x tub e

FL +
2 mm

FL +
5 mm

FL

FL +
2 mm

FL +
5 mm

FL

192
208
224
235

207

200

233

220

94
87
124
11 4

104

157

92

11 8

doi:10.1533/wint.2004.3286

Support materials for supermartensitic welding


The development of supermartensitic consumables for
welding with matching composition and the development
of the relative welding procedures is currently underway.
However, it is obvious that this concept offers numerous
advantages in terms of ownership, productivity and the
possibility of conducting a PWHT if necessary. Another
advantage, which is often undervalued, in comparison
with duplex or super duplex consumables, is that a
martensitic microstructure of the weld is expected for
any level of dilution with the base metal.
The resistance features on the supermartensitic base
material as supplied can vary according to the exact
composition and the cycle of thermal treatment to which
they are subject. The experience has demonstrated that
contribution super duplex materials produce a deposited
metal with overmatching and matching at laboratory
temperatures. On the contrary, at testing temperatures
greater than 100 C, the situation is often turned upside
down as the yield load of the supermartensitic material
increases, whereas the duplex resistance typically
decreases by 1015%.8,14 For many reasons, it is therefore
very probable that it is only a question of time until
supermartensitic consumables become the preferred choice
in the welding of supermartensitic stainless steels.
Support materials for diverse welds

Supermartensitic stainless steels

welding of supermartensitic materials with super duplex


materials and any choice should, therefore, be based on
considerations such as the geometry of the joint and the
operative conditions.
Acknowledgements
Some of the results presented in this article have been
produced within the JOTSUP (Development of Advanced
Joining Technologies for Supermartensitic Stainless Steel
Line Pipes, project No. GRD1-1999-10278) European
project. The authors wish to express their thanks to
NKK Europe Ltd, Weldtech and Valk IPS for their valid
contribution to the positive application of supermartensitic
consumables to narrow gap orbital welding; to W. Schfer
and J. Heater of EEW (Erndtebrcker Eisenwerk, Gmbh
& Co, KG) for production of the tubing with longitudinal
welding, the relative tests conducted and the permission
to publish their results; and to Arctos Insduxtrier AS of
Sandefjord, Norway, for their ability in the welding of
dissimilar joins and for the permission to publish the
results of the tests.
References
1
2
3

This study has highlighted the fact that both Ni based


contribution materials and super duplex materials can be
used successfully for heterogeneous welding of pipes
in supermartensitic steel with super duplex pipes. However,
it is well known that Ni based consumables linked to Nb
are less appropriate because of the risk of formations of
fragile stages enriched with Nb and Ni close to the border
of fusion of the duplex material. Thus, consumables without
Nb like the Alloy 59 type used in this experience and
others containing Nb are preferable, such as the Alloy
625 type.
The use of duplex and super duplex consumables is
easier in the sense that no problem has emerged in the
super duplex part of the joint and in so far as they have
been extensively used to weld supermartensitic materials.
Nonetheless, according to the dimensions of the tubes
to be welded and the testing temperature, the lesser
decrease in yield values of the Ni based weld with the
increase in temperature can be beneficial. Moreover,
problems have been encountered for cracks from
hydrogen which can be spread in the thermically altered
zone of the supermartensitic tubes welded with super
duplex consumables.15 Similar problems are not predicted
for Ni based consumables given the high levels of
solubility and the slow diffusion of the hydrogen in an
austenitic micro-structure.
In conclusion, both Ni based consumables and super
duplex consumables are ideal for the heterogeneous

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