Fractal dimension of the microstructure of AISI 316L steel (17 Cr, 12.7 Ni, 2.1 Mo, 1. 5 Mn, 0.01 C) with different degrees of strain were obtained from Richardson plots of grain boundary perimeter against magnification. Grain boundaries were revealed using conventional metallographic techniques and measurements were taken with the aid of an automatic image analizer (Quantimet 520) attached to an optical microscope. The magnifications used were 50, 100, 200, 400, and 1000X. The samples were obtained from a 4” diameter tubing, machined according to ASTM A370 standard test method and deformed to 5, 10, 15, and 20 % tensile strain. The results show that the fractal dimension of the grain boundaries changes as deformation is imparted to the material.
These results suggest that fractal dimension may be used to describe microstructural evolution of metals during deformation processes.