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topic 9867

302 Stainless Steel Etching


(2001)

Please could you tell me what would be the best way to measure the thickness of the oxide layer on 302 stainless steel. Also I would like to know what may cause brown tarnish, surface pitting and a blue residue (visible under the optical microscope) after etching with ferric chloride.

Thanks for any help.

Pete Anniss
alloys - Kingsbridge, Devon, UK


(2001)

Two methods are commonly used for measuring the thickness of oxide films on stainless steels - Auger electron spectroscopy and x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. These techniques perform very surface sensitive chemical analysis concurrent with ion sputtering to slowly remove material from the sample surface. A plot of surface composition versus depth from the surface is obtained, from which the oxide layer thickness can be determined. I am assuming that you are seeking to measure the thickness of the typical oxide layer for passivated stainless steel - not for a thick oxide coating.

larry hanke
Larry Hanke
materials testing laboratory
Minneapolis, Minnesota





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