Following the development of duplex stainless steels, their initial specification was captured as UNS S31803. However, a number of the leading manufacturers were consistently producing this grade to the upper end of the allowable specification. This reflected their desire to maximise the corrosion performance of the alloy, aided by the development of the AOD steelmaking process that allowed tighter control of composition. In addition, it also allowed the level of nitrogen additions to be influenced, rather than just present as a background element. Therefore, the highest performing duplex grade sought to maximise the levels of chromium (Cr), molybdenum (Mo) and nitrogen (N). The difference between a duplex alloy whose composition meets the bottom of the specification, versus one that hits the top of the specification can be several points based upon the formula PREN = %Cr + 3.3 %Mo + 16 % N.
In order to differentiate the duplex stainless steel produced at the top end of the composition range, a further specification was introduced, namely UNS S32205. Duplex stainless steel made to the S32205 (F60) caption will fully meet the S31803 (F51) caption, whereas the reverse is not true. Therefore S32205 can be dual-certified as S31803.