Volume 47 (2007) Issue 1 Pages 157-162
The amount of strain provided by shot peening (SP) was estimated by comparing the shot-peened surface structure to the cold-rolled structure. The grain size of recrystallized structure beneath the shot-peened nanocrystalline (NC) surface after annealing was similar to that of the specimen after cold-rolling (equivalent strain εeq=ca. 6) and annealing. The εeq larger than 6 seems to be given to the surface region by SP. This strain amount is consistent with the necessary condition (εeq>7) to produce NC structure proposed in the previous study. The large strain gradient is also generated at the shot-peened surface. The strain gradient has been suggested as one of important factors on strengthening and on grain refinement. The deformation by SP is complex; the role of strain gradient was investigated by using high-pressure torsion (HPT) process. The maximum hardness (Hv 5 GPa) in the Fe–0.03mass%C disk after HPT-straining was twice higher than the hardness (2.4 GPa) obtained by cold-rolling. At the center of HPT-processed disk, where shear strain is nominally zero, the hardness increased up to a saturation value of 3.3 GPa. These results in the HPT experiment show that strain gradient contributes to strengthening and to grain refinement. However, the grain refinement was saturated with around 200 nm in layered grain thickness although the HPT-processed disk was applied large strain and strain gradient. This suggests that not only strain gradient and strain but also other deformation conditions are necessary to form NC structure.