A corrosion- and creep-resistant austenitic stainless steel has been developed for advanced recuperator applications. By optimizing the Al and Cr contents, the alloy is fully austenitic for creep strength while allowing the formation of a chemically-stable external alumina scale at temperatures up to 900°C. An alumina scale eliminates long-term problems with the formation of volatile Cr oxy-hydroxides in the presence of water vapor in exhaust gas. As a first step in producing foil for primary surface recuperators, three commercially cast heats have been rolled to ∼100μm thick foil in the laboratory to evaluate performance in creep and oxidation testing. Results from initial creep testing are presented at 675° and 750°C showing excellent creep strength compared to other candidate foil materials. Laboratory exposures in humid air at 650°-800°C have shown acceptable oxidation resistance. Similar oxidation behavior was observed for sheet specimens of these alloys exposed in a modified 65kW microturbine for 2,871h. One composition that showed superior creep and oxidation resistance has been selected for preparation of a commercial batch of foil.

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