Development of Pitting Resistant Steel for Transmission Gears
It was found that pitting resistance of gears is strongly influenced by resistance to temper softening of carburized steel. The investigation about the influence of chemical compositions on hardness after tempering revealed that silicon, chromium and molybdenum are effective elements to improve resistance to temper softening and pitting resistance. Considering the production of gears, molybdenum is unfavorable because it increases hardness of normalized or annealed condition. Developed new steel contains about 0.5 mass% of silicon and 2.7 mass% chromium. The new steel has excellent pitting resistance and wear resistance. Fatigue and impact strength are equivalent to conventional carburized steels. Cold-formability and machinability of the new steel are adequate for manufacturing gears because of its ordinary hardness before carburizing. The new steel has already been put to practical use in automatic transmission gears. Application test results are also reported.