Existing studies suggest that martensite-to-austenite reversion can increase the overall mechanical strength of maraging steel. Their effect on corrosion properties, however, is unclear. Selective laser melted (SLM) specimens were tempered near austenite finish temperatures to investigate the electrochemical effect of reversed austenite. X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and energy dispersive spectrometry (EDS) were used to characterize their microstructure. To define and test pitting performance, potentiodynamic polarization and open-circuit potential were performed in a 3.5 wt. % NaCl solution. The reversed austenite precipitated mainly along the martensite lath boundaries during the Intercritical heat treatment at 720°C. The nucleation of reversed austenite is allowed by the local Ni enrichment caused by the dissolution of intermetallic particles. As a result, the tempered 720°C specimens reported a higher pitting potential, lowest corrosion current density, and lowest corrosion rate than the as-printed, aged, and homogenized specimens. No investigations have been performed to date that demonstrate the impact of austenite reversion on the corrosion susceptibility of SLM maraging steel. Other than being nobler, austenite is lighter than martensite due to reduced precipitant density, accounting for fewer galvanic cells and a lower corrosion rate.

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