ABSTRACT During high speed tool steel production up to 0.2 wt % silicon is added, primarily to react with oxygen e.g. silicon acts as a de-oxidizer. If more than 0.2 wt % silicon is added, it serves to improve the deep hardening properties. An addition up to ~1 wt % silicon provides hardness and improves temper-stability but reduces the ductility. At high concentration, silicon causes embrittlement. Alloying with silicon raises the solubility of carbon in the matrix and hence the as-quenched hardness. It has virtually no influence on the carbide distribution, but it promotes the formation of M6C type carbides. The many essential alloy additions to iron (C, W, Mo, V, Cr, Si) make the high speed tool steel, HSS a complex multi-component system. Its complete experimental investigation would require enormous time and effort. Instead, the CALPHAD method has been successfully used for computation of phase equilibrium the multi-component HSS system. In the present work, the Thermo-Calc program has been applied to the system Fe-C-Cr-W-Mo-V-Si with the thermodynamic information contained in the solid-solution-database of the TCFE. In the present work, some temperature-concentration diagrams for silicon modified AISI M2 steel are presented by calculated quantities (melting and transformation temperatures, amount and compositions of phases). Calculated data are compared with standard AISI M2 high speed tool steel.
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