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Characterization of retained austenite in case carburized gears and its influence on fatigue performance

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Fouad Abudaia, Emeritus Professor Terry Evans, Professor Brian Shaw


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Carburized helical gears with high retained austenite were tested for surface contact fatigue. The retained austenite before testing was 60% and was associated with low hardness near the case's surface. However, the tested gears showed good pitting resistance, with fatigue strength greater than 1,380 MPa. Detailed examination carried out on a gear that had been tested by contact on one flank on each tooth in a back-to-back test revealed that about 50% of the initial retained austenite was transformed to martensite during the test. Transformation was stress- or strain-assisted and was limited to a thin layer of 10 μm thickness or less at the surface. The increase in surface contact fatigue strength is attributed to the increased compressive residual stress and hardness in the mechanically transformed layer.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Abudaia FB, Evans JT, Shaw BA

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Gear Technology

Year: 2003

Volume: 20

Issue: 3

Pages: 12-16

Print publication date: 01/05/2003

ISSN (print): 0743-6858

ISSN (electronic):

Publisher: Randall Publishing