The low cycle fatigue (LCF) behaviour of two cast as well as two hot extruded Fe3Al-based iron aluminide alloys, either with or without Cr, is investigated. All four alloys contain microalloying additions of Zr, Nb, C and B. Fatigue tests were carried out under strain control for strain amplitudes in the range of εa = 0.1 – 0.4 % for the cast alloys and εa = 0.1 – 0.7 % for the extruded materials, at frequencies of 1 Hz (extruded Fe3Al) and 3 Hz (all other alloys) and at room temperature and 300 °C. Within the first cycles all alloys show strong cyclic hardening. Furthermore the fatigue strain – fatigue life curves are steeper at 300 °C than at room temperature, showing increased fatigue strength at low cycle numbers due to increasing ductility and decreased fatigue strength at increasing cycle numbers because of reduced yield strength. Cr is found to have only a negligible influence on the fatigue behaviour of Fe3Al-based alloys. Comparison between the differently processed materials shows superior LCF properties of the hot extruded iron aluminides due to significantly smaller grain sizes.
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