The effect of deformation temperature on microstructure and mechanical properties was investigated for thermomechanically processed NbTi-microalloyed steel with ferrite-pearlite microstructure. With a decrease in the finish deformation temperature at 1348 K to 1098 K (1075 °C to 825 °C) temperature range, the ambient temperature yield stress did not vary significantly, work hardening rate decreased, ultimate tensile strength decreased, and elongation to failure increased. These variations in mechanical properties were correlated to the variations in microstructural parameters (such as ferrite grain size, solid solution concentrations, precipitate number density and dislocation density). Calculations based on the measured microstructural parameters suggested the grain refinement, solid solution strengthening, precipitation strengthening, and work hardening contributed up to 32 pct, up to 48 pct, up to 25 pct, and less than 3 pct to the yield stress, respectively. With a decrease in the finish deformation temperature, both the grain size strengthening and solid solution strengthening increased, the precipitation strengthening decreased, and the work hardening contribution did not vary significantly.
ARC/LP110100231, ARC/LE0237478, ARC/LE0882613