Stainless steel 321 VS 347

The property of 321 stainless steel and 347 stainless steel is similar in most cases, the 321 stainless steel is a kind of titanium – stabilization of 18/8 austenitic stainless steel (304), a small amount of titanium makes it in carbide precipitation temperature range, that’s 425-850℃, not appear intergranular corrosion after heating, with good strength, resistance to oxidation peeling and aqueous corrosion resistance.

The 321H is a high-carbon version of the 321 with higher high-temperature strength and is primarily used for high-temperature applications around 900°C. The disadvantage of 321 is that titanium has poor welding arc transition, so it cannot be used as welding material, while 347 containing niobium also plays the role of carbide stabilization, and can also be transferred through welding arc. 347 is standard welding material for 321 stainless steel welding and occasionally used as the base metal. Let’s see their chemical and mechanical comparison below:


Chemical composition comparison

Grades C Mn Si P S Cr Ni Mo N Other
321 0.08 2.00 0.75 0.045 0.03 17.0-19.0 9.0-12.0 / 0.1 Ti=5(C+N)0.7
347 0.08 2.00 0.75 0.045 0.03 17.0-19.0 9.0-13.0 / / Nb=10(C+N)1.0

We can see that the difference between them is the addition of  Ti and Nb. Due to the addition of stabilized element titanium, 321 can resist the formation of chromium carbide at 426℃~815℃, so it has excellent intergranular corrosion resistance and high-temperature performance and has higher creep and stress fracture properties than 304 and 304L. In addition, 321 also has good low-temperature toughness and excellent formability and welding characteristics, without annealing after welding.

347 Stainless steel is a niobium-containing Austenitic stainless steel and 347H is its high carbon version. 347 can be seen as a niobium-adding version based on 304. Nb, a rare earth element, has a similar effect to titanium in refining grains,  can resist intergranular corrosion and promoting aging hardening.


Physical property comparison

Grades Tensile strength, Mpa Yield strength, Mpa Elongation(50mm) Hardness, HB
321 515 205 40 217
347 515 205 40 201


Typical applications

347&347H stainless steel has better high-temperature performance than 304 and 321. It is widely used in aviation, petrochemical, food, papermaking and other industries, such as exhaust pipe and branch pipe of aero engine, hot gas pipe of turbine compressor and parts working under low load and temperature not exceeding 850℃.

The addition of titanium to the 321 makes it more suitable for where need high temperature and good corrosion resisting applications. It is suitable for 304 sensitized and 304L applications with insufficient high-temperature strength. Typical applications include thermal expansion joints, bellows, aircraft exhaust system components, heating element sleeves, furnace components, and heat exchangers.