The high alloyed austenitic manganese steel, the Hadfield steel (C = 1.2 %, Mn = 12 %, Si = 0.45 %), thanks to its good wear resistance of the running surface and maintaining the high toughness of the internal material, is successfully applied for casted crossings. The crossings are the most dynamic stressed components in the railway turnouts. Thanks to low surface and sub-surface hardness the occurrence of plastic deformation and the progressive wear of the crossing running surfaces can be found since the initial stages of the crossing operational life. One possibility how to increase the surface and the sub-surface hardness and this way improve the dimensional stability and the crossing lifetime as well is to apply the explosive hardening of the crossing running surfaces. The technology mentioned above means the application of the explosives to the running surface of the crossing, when the high pressure wave acting within the extremely short period actuates the plastic deformation of the material structure. The experiments of this work describe the long – term validation, the surface hardness and wear of the running surfaces of 4 explosive hardened crossings made by Hadfield steel already installed into the Czech Railways network.Keywords: Hadfield steel, explosive hardening, railway crossing, hardness, wear
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