Duplex stainless steel (2205 grade) and vessel steel (DIN-P355GH grade) were cladded by explosive welding. The relationship between hardness, tensile shear strength and toughness and microstructure of cladded materials were evaluated. The bond interface of the cladded materials shows a wavy morphology. The hardness was similar in the base and flyer plate near the bond interface while a general increase was observed in both base and flyer plate about 25 mum away from interface. Tensile shear strength test results showed that duplex stainless steel-vessel steel cladded materials exhibit an acceptable joint strength. The impact toughness of the cladded materials at a given test temperature is found significantly higher than that of the base material alone because of the high impact toughness of the duplex stainless steel layer. Consequently, mechanical and corrosion properties of the low carbon steels can be increased by explosive cladding with duplex stainless steel. (C) 2003 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.