US 3926689 A
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United States Paten Respen et a1. y
[ Dec. 16, 1975 METHOD OF PRODUCING HOT ROLLED STEEL RODS OR BARS Inventors: Yves Jean Respen, l-lerstal; Paul Andre Cosse, Bellaire; Mario Economopoulos, Liege, all of Belgium Centre de Recherches Metallurgiques Centrum voor Research in de Metallurgie, Brussels, Belgium Filed: Oct. 31, 1973 Appl. No.: 411,227
Foreign Application Priority Data Assignee:
Oct. 31, 1972 Belgium 790867 US. Cl. 148/l2.4; 148/143; 148/156; 148/157 Int. Cl. BZIB 3/00 Field of Search 148/13, 14, 18, 39, 143, 148/144,145,152,153, 156,157, 12 B,
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,111,436 11/1963 McGavin 148/143 3,756,870 9/1973 Kasper et a1 148/153 X Primary ExaminerL. Dewayne Rutledge Assistant ExaminerArthur J. Steiner Attorney, Agent, or Firm Holrnan & Stern  ABSTRACT 5 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures U.S. Patent Dec. 16, 1975 Sheet 2 of2 3,926,689
(5OOX) (5OOX) METHOD OF PRODUCING HOT ROLLED STEEL RODS OR BARS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The present invention relates to a treatment for improving the quality of a rolled steel rod or bar and especially a concrete-reinforcing rod or bar.
The process can be applied to both killed and semikilled steels and rimming steels.
The main qualities looked for in a steel rod or bar are, inter alia, as high as possible a yield point for the grade of steel, used as well as weldability, fatigue resistance, and sufficient ductility for the intended use.
To improve the weldability and ductility of steel, it is necessary to reduce its carbon and manganese contents, which, however, causes a reduction in its tensile strength. In order to remedy this disadvantage, the steel can be subjected to a suitable cooling treatment, preferably applied directly at the exit of the rolling mill, which enables the yield point of the rod or bar to be raised to some extent.
When a rod or bar (such as concrete-reinforcing rod or bar) is cooled by convection or radiation, the law of cooling almost only depends on its diameter, which has the result that, for a bar of a specific diameter, it is nec essary in order to modify its elastic limit, to use other means in order to complement the pure and simple act of cooling.
Of these means, it is particularly worth mentioning the addition of dispersoidal elements (e.g. Nb and V) which cause grain refinement and precipitation hardening of the ferrite. This is indeed efficacious but has the disadvantage that the cost increases as the yield point is raised.
Thus what is desired is a process which avoids the aforesaid disadvantage without the carbon and manganese contents in the steel having to be increased in a way which is unacceptable from the point of view of weldability.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION In one aspect, the present invention provides a process for the production of a steel rod or bar in a hot rolling mill, including superficially quenching the rod or bar at the exit of the finishing stand, with the core of the rod or bar having a temperature of approximately 850C at the end of the quenching step.
In another aspect, the invention provides a process for the production of a, steel rod or bar in a hot rolling mill, including: superficially quenching the rod or bar at the exit of the finishing stand, to give the surface layer of the rod or bar a bainitic or martensitic structure, with the core of the rod or bar remaining austenitic and subsequently cooling the rod or bar at such a rate that the austenitic core transforms to ferrite and carbides.
In the preferred process, at the exit of the finishing stand of the hot rolling mill, the rod or bar is subjected to superficial quenching by means of a suitable cooling liquid, and the conditions of quenching are selected so that at the outlet of the liquid-cooling zone, the core of the rod or bar has a temperature of about 850C (e.g. 800860C). The rod or bar stays on the cooler (air cooling), so that it is possible for the quenched surface layer to become tempered and for the austenitic core of the rod or bar to transform to ferrite and carbides (e.g. to transform to pearlite).
According to the conditions used, the quenched surface layer is either of martensite or bainite.
From the practical point of view, the desired quenching of the bar is obtained by selecting the cooling devices and suitably adjusting the length and arrangement of these devices, for example cooling sprays.
Although, whatever conditions of quenching are applied to the rod or bar. the mechanical properties of the rod or bar are improved compared with bars which have not been subjected to this treatment, it has nevertheless been found that the improvement increases as the heat transfer coefficient of the quenching installation increases. Thus, for a treatment lasting 0.55 seconds, the steel may have an yield point of 45 kg/mm when the installation has a low heat transfer coefficient, and may have an yield point of 65 kg/mm if this coefficient is raised, if, for example, a short cooling spray is used but where very intense cooling of the rod or bar has taken place (e.g., if the water contains a mineral salt or a surface-active agent in suspension or solution).
The example just given allows the improvement in the quality of the rod or bar obtained by implementing the process of the invention to be appreciated. The rolled test-pieces examined were concrete-reinforcing bars 12 mm in diameter and of steel having the following composition:
carbon 0.24% manganese 1.3 8% silicon 0.0 8% aluminium 0.002% sulphur 0.0 20% In the as-rolled state, the bars in question had the following properties:
Yield Point (Re) 35 t l kg/mm Tensile strength (Rr) 58 i 2 kg/mm Elongation (A 33 i 2 7r Treated according to the process of the invention, by passing through a water spray with a high heat transfer coefficient, the bars had the following properties:
Re A Re/Rr Time in water spray kgfrnm 045 seconds 50 27 0.75 0.65 seconds I9 0.85
The process according to the invention enables rod and bar of a particular type to be obtained, namely having a bainitic or martensitic surface layer and a core composed of ferrite and carbides.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 shows the variation of the hardness of the steel along a radius of a cross-section of a concrete-reinforcing bar as treated according to the invention. The hardness (DI-IP) is shown along the ordinate while the abscissa indicates the distance (d) from the surface of the bar.
FIG. 2a illustratesa cross-section of a concrete-reinforcing bar treated according to the invention in which the surface layer and core can be distinctly seen. FIG. 2b shows the martensitic surface layer, and FIG. shows the ferrite and carbides which constitute the core of the bar (magnification: 500 x).
1. A process for the production of a steel rod or bar in a hot rolling mill, comprising: superficially quenching the rod or bar at the exit of a finishing stand to form bainite or martensite in the surface layer of the rod or 2. A process for the production of a steel rod or bar in a hot rolling mill, including: superficially quenching the rod or bar at the exit of a finishing stand, to give the surface layer of the rod or bar a bainitic or martensitic structure, with the core of the rod or bar remaining austenitic; and subsequently cooling the rod or bar at such a rate that the austenitic core transforms to ferrite and carbides.
3. A process for the production of a steel rod or bar in ahot rolling mill, comprising: superficially quenching the rod or bar at the exit of a finishing stand, to transform austenite in the surface layer of the rod or bar to bainite or martensite, with the core of the rod or bar remaining austenite; and subsequently cooling the rod or bar at such a rate that the core of austenite transforms to ferrite and carbides while the surface layer is tempered by the heat transferred from the core.
4. The process as claimed in claim 3, in which the water contains a mineral salt or a surface-active agent, in suspension or solution.
5. The process as claimed in claim 1, in which the rate of removal of heat from the rod or bar during superficial quenching is higher than that obtained in a water quench.