A study of martensitic stainless steel AISI 420 modified using plasma nitriding

I. Alphonsa, A. Chainani, P. M. Raole, B. Ganguli, P. I. John

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

92 Citations (Scopus)


We studied martensitic stainless steel AISI 420, modified using glow discharge plasma nitriding. Microhardness measurements, X-ray diffraction (XRD), Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and Auger electron spectroscopy (AES) were used to investigate the surface microhardness, crystal structure, microstructure and chemical bonding in the modified surfaces. High surface microhardness (∼ 1300 HV) over a case depth of about 60 microns is obtained. Glancing ińcidence X-ray diffraction (GIXRD) indicates the presence of a predominantly Fe3N phase with dispersed CrN within 2-5 microns on the surface. In addition, using Bragg-Brentano geometry, we measured the presence of a minor phase of Fe4N in the case depth. SEM confirms that the microstructure within 2-5 microns of the surface is different from that of the bulk. XPS shows nitride phase formation on the surface. AES measured over the cross-section of the case depth shows a direct relation of the increased surface microhardness to the high nitrogen content.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)263-268
Number of pages6
JournalSurface and Coatings Technology
Issue number2-3
Publication statusPublished - 2002 Feb 15

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Materials Chemistry


Dive into the research topics of 'A study of martensitic stainless steel AISI 420 modified using plasma nitriding'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this