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Effective against aggressive media


One of the most important things needed when developing new oil and gas fields are tools which reliably work in great depths under the sea. The problem is that these tools are subjected to rock formations of varying hardness and aggressive media, necessitating special high strength steels which also exhibit a high corrosion resistance. This combination of properties proves to be a challenging proposition.

Author: Merlin Seifert, Deutsche Edelstahlwerke

Whether for enhancing effectiveness in a car’s powertrain, extracting oil and gas safely and reliably or increasing durability of components in the aerospace sector, the use of special long steel is indispensable in many industries.  Finished machined mandrel bars e.g., made from hot work tool steel and in lengths of up to 26 meters, are used in mills who manufacture seamless tubes & pipes for the oil and gas industry. Other applications for long steel products in the field of oil and gas extraction are drill collars and rotors in the drive unit and power section of subsea drill strings.

Special long steel generally allows a high product differentiation, yet requires extensive expertise – especially in the highly sensitive area of oil and gas exploration. The drilling fluids used here often contain sour gas and chlorides. These aggressive media constantly attack the extraction equipment, particularly at increased temperatures. The reaction with the steel in use can lead to pitting and stress corrosion in the worst case. To prevent restrictions or even failure of the equipment, only exclusive materials are approved by oil and gas companies. Good resistance to pitting and stress corrosion is frequently required in this respect, combined with a strength that allows users a certain amount of freedom in terms of component design.

The steadily increasing requirements on the material properties lead to ongoing research and development of materials in order to counter corrosion in particular. The focus often lies on coatings or modified alloy compositions. For instance, the rotors already mentioned are tungsten carbide or hard chrome-plated in order to improve wear and corrosion resistance. Coatings can totally change the properties of a component though sometimes well adapted to its requirements. As described above, alloy development is always subject to certain limits with regard to the desired combination of different properties. Whilst coating processes such as hard chrome-plating often generate considerable additional costs, alloy development represents a more cost-effective alternative. Another feasible alternative is the application-oriented qualification of materials. Here, the conditions encountered during use are analyzed and transferred to appropriate laboratory tests. If a steel passes the tests required for the qualification process it can be approved for certain applications or customers. This was also carried out at Deutsche Edelstahlwerke (DEW) for the special steel, Corrodur 4418 Mod, which has to comply with requirements from the industry standards NORSOK M-650 and NACE MR0175.

Controlled heat treatment for achieving required steel properties

Deutsche Edelstahlwerke, a company in the SCHMOLZ + BICKENBACH Group, offer a wide portfolio of steel qualities for the oil and gas exploration sector. These include low and high-alloyed structural steels, ferritic, martensitic, high-alloyed austenitic and duplex stainless steels as well as non-magnetic steels. With Corrodur 4418 Mod (also known as Super 13Cr) DEW now qualified a stainless steel that is widely used in completion tools in the oil and gas exploration industry. This involves a material solution that exceeds conventional chrome steels in terms of performance. The required properties are specifically set by means of a controlled heat treatment. The result is an extremely high-performance steel characterized by high strength, outstanding toughness and good resistance to pitting and stress corrosion. With a tensile strength of at least 125 ksi (862 MPa), a yield strength of at least 110 ksi (758 MPa) and a toughness of at least 60 ft-lbs (81 J) at 14 °F (-10 °C), Corrodur 4418 Mod is far superior to conventional 13 % chrome steels.

Laboratory tests confirm performance advantage

These properties were determined by extensive laboratory tests. The steel was austenitized between 1778 and 1886 °F (970 – 1030 °C) and then quenched in water. Tempering was carried out at 1022 to 1202 °F (550 – 650 °C) subsequently. The best compromise between strength and ductility were achieved in the temperature range between 1076 and 1106 °F (580 – 630 °C). This temperature range was confirmed in real life during heat treatment of bars, proving that the required properties are met by industrial heat treatment in continuous furnaces as well.

The test results for Corrodur 4418 Mod are also impressive in terms of its corrosion properties. After extensive tests, no signs of intercrystalline corrosion according to ASTM A 262 Prac. A and Prac. E could be detected, as was expected. In addition, tests performed according to NACE TM0177 and NACE TM0316 regarding sulphide induced stress cracking (SSC) and stress corrosion cracking (SCC) using application-oriented media were passed successfully. This enabled the steel to be qualified by Equinor ASA (formerly Statoil ASA) as well as a growing number of other end consumers.

At the beginning of the year DEW presented their new special steel at the Corrosion Conference & Expo (organizer: NACE International), the world’s biggest trade fair for solutions to prevent corrosion. More than 6,000 corrosion experts from 60 countries visited the exhibition in Nashville/Tennessee, USA, including scientists, engineers and technicians, but also purchasers, meaning the new steel and its qualification could be presented at all levels of the supply chain.

In the coming year, DEW together with SCHMOLZ + BICKENBACH USA will be represented at NACE Corrosion in Houston Texas as well –once again the focus will also be on Corrodur 4418 Mod.

You can find further information and a current brochure about Corrodur 4418 Mod under https://www.dew-stahl.com/produkte/anwendung-industrie/oel-und-gasexploration/.

Umfang:         6.576 Zeichen inklusive Leerzeichen
Stand:             07 October 2019
Photo material:


Image 1: In form of Corrodur 4418 Mod, Deutsche Edelstahlwerke has developed a stainless steel that increases process reliability in the oil and gas extraction field.

Image 2: Mechanical properties of Corrodur 4418 Mod measured in the tensile test depending on finished diameter, source: Deutsche Edelstahlwerke

About Deutsche Edelstahlwerke
Deutsche Edelstahlwerke is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of special steel long products. Deutsche Edelstahlwerke can look back on over 160 years of experience in the production of high-grade steel products. The range of products is unique worldwide and includes tool steels, stainless, acid and heat-resistant steels, engineering and bearing steels, and special materials. The product portfolio ranges from 0.7 mm drawn wire to forged products of up to 1,100 mm in diameter. Deutsche Edelstahlwerke customers receive the entire manufacturing chain from a single source: from production to prefabrication to heat and surface treatment. Deutsche Edelstahlwerke is a company of the SCHMOLZ + BICKENBACH Group.

Since the late 1970’s SCHMOLZ + BICKENBACH USA has been active in the distribution for the US market. The activities of the company are focused on providing the highest quality tool steels, stainless steels, and engineering steels from our own mills: Deutsche Edelstahlwerke, Ugitech, Steeltec, Swiss Steel, Finkl Steel and Ascometal. The company operates seven service centers located throughout the Midwest, East Coast, West Coast and the growing Southeast Region. Territory Managers, located throughout the USA, and Technical Support Specialists, equipped with in house metallurgical lab capabilities, are available to provide comprehensive sales and technical support to our valued customers.

The SCHMOLZ + BICKENBACH Group is one of the world’s leading providers of individual solutions in the special long steel products sector. The Group is one of the leading manufacturers of tool steel and non-corrosive long steel on the global market and one of the two largest companies in Europe for alloyed and high-alloyed quality and engineering steels. With more than 10 000 employees and its own production and distribution companies in more than 30 countries on 5 continents, the company guarantees global support and supply for its customers and offers them a complete portfolio of production and sales & services around the world. Customers benefit from the company’s technological expertise, consistently high product quality around the world as well as detailed knowledge of local markets.

Corporate contact
Wolfgang Henstorf • Deutsche Edelstahlwerke
Phone: +49 (0) 271 808-2813
E-mail: wolfgang.henstorf@dew-stahl.com
Website: www.dew-stahl.com

Oliver Raudszus • SCHMOLZ + BICKENBACH
Phone: +41 (0) 41 581-41202
E-mail: o.raudszus@schmolz-bickenbach.com
Website: www.schmolz-bickenbach.com

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