Vanadium as an alloying element in powder metallurgy steels
Vanadium is a common alloying element used in wrought metallurgy to manufacture high strength low alloy (HSLA) materials. Vanadium provides improvement in strength and wear resistance through grain refinement and precipitation of vanadium carbonitrides. As PM steels typically utilize high amounts of carbon and are sintered in nitrogen containing atmospheres, potential exists to utilize the element. With small alloy additions and well controlled manufacturing conditions, it is interesting to evaluate the potential improvement in properties by the use of vanadium. In this study, prealloyed vanadium powders with differing vanadium levels were manufactured and evaluated in common ferrous PM material systems. As sintered and heat treated properties indicated the vanadium containing materials achieved identical or better mechanical properties with 50% of the total alloying content reduced.