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Isochronal ageing of a precipitation hardening aluminium alloy

Isochronal ageing of a precipitation hardening aluminium alloy

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To understand how the aging temperature affect on the hardness of aluminium alloy.
To understand how the aging temperature affect on the hardness of aluminium alloy.

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Published by: Undergraduate Awards on Sep 01, 2012
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Isochronal ageing of a precipitation hardening aluminium alloy

Yuanyuan You ID: 0700061 Lecturer: Professor S Hampshire Aim: To understand how the aging temperature affect on the hardness of aluminium alloy. Procedure: Test the hardness of differently aged aluminium alloys. • Sample A: Solution treated condition • Sample B: Aged 20 ºC for 1 hour. • Sample C: Aged 75 ºC for 1 hour. • Sample D: Aged 100 ºC for 1 hour. • Sample E: Aged 125 ºC for 1 hour. • Sample F: Aged 150 ºC for 1 hour. • Sample G: Aged 175 ºC for 1 hour. • Sample H: Aged 200 ºC for 1 hour. • Sample I: Aged 250 ºC for 1 hour. • Sample J: Aged 300 ºC for 1 hour. • Sample K: Aged 350 ºC for 1 hour. • Sample L: Aged 400 ºC for 1 hour. Results: Sample A B C D E F G H I J K L Condition Soln HT 20ºC 1HR 75ºC 1HR 100ºC 1HR 125ºC 1HR 150ºC 1HR 175ºC 1HR 200ºC 1HR 250ºC 1HR 300ºC 1HR 350ºC 1HR 400ºC 1HR 1 83.7 83.5 106.3 110.3 93.8 111 117.2 129.4 123.7 112.4 93.9 72.2 VHN (HV5) 2 3 85.6 84.2 81.4 84.6 110.4 112.4 108 112.8 92.9 91.4 110.6 110.9 118.9 114.6 125.4 120.2 121.1 125.3 109.3 113.1 93.3 91.2 76 75.5

Mean 84.50 83.17 109.70 110.37 92.70 110.83 116.90 125 123.37 111.60 92.80 74.57

Stand deviation 0.9849 1.6258 3.1097 2.4007 1.2124 0.2082 2.1656 4.6130 2.1197 2.0224 1.4177 2.0648

Fig 1: Hardness Vs Ageing temperature.


Hardness Vs Ageing temperature




Hardness VHN




0 0 50 100 150 200 250 300 350 400 450

Ageing temperature (ºC)

Fig 1, as shown above, before 100 ºC , the hardness of aluminium alloy increases with heat treat temperature increases, it is noted that double peak hardness value observed at aging temperature 100 ºC and 200 ºC, after 200 ºC, the hardness of aluminium keep decreasing. Discussion: The observation of the data above can be explained by the process of precipitation hardening. Precipitation hardening is the formation of precipitates from a supersaturated solid solution. In general, it may be said that an increase in hardness is synonymous with an increased difficulty of moving dislocations. Either a dislocation must cut through the precipitate particles in its path, in either case; more stress is needed to move the dislocations through a lattice containing precipitate particles. thus, the Orowan mechanism was proposed to explain the interaction of dislocations with precipitate particles that have grown large enough for dislocation segments to be able to bend and pass between adjacent particles, in this mechanism the dislocation is assumed to form expanding loops around the precipitate particles which cancel as in a Frank-Read source. This cancellation permits the dislocation to continue its motion, but leaves a dislocation ring around the particle whose stress field adds resistance to the motion of the next dislocation. For Al-Cu alloys, at lower temperature, very fine precipitates are able to form, these precipitates are referred to as GP1 (Guinier-preston ) zone, a small atomic size misfit, and a high degree of supersaturation. Dislocation motions are resisted by the stress field of GP1, therefore, the hardness increases. Further aging make GP1 zone enlarge and form a new zone which are referred as GP2 or Ө’’ precipitates. GP2 zone is also a coherent zone and have “c” dimension dissimilar with Al, this gives rises to elastic coherency strains. Maximum hardness can be attained when the Ө’’ constituent is close to its maximum amount and the elastic strain fields of Ө’’ zone impinges upon each other. Ө’ zone will formed for further aging, Ө’ precipitates have very similar structure with Ө’’ precipitates, but Ө’ precipitates are incoherent with the matrix and dislocation are

able to cut through these particles ease compared to coherent Ө’’ precipitates, so the hardness decreases. At relatively high temperature, GP1 zones are unable to form and thus the initial peak hardness occurs when an optimum zone size disappears. Additional information: By looking at the aluminium alloys were tested, they were very complex alloys (containing Cu, Mg, Ni, Fe, Si and Ti) rather than simple Al-Cu alloys, as this alloys in originally developed for operation in gas turbine zero-engines during second world, creep resistant properties can not be attained by using Al-Cu alloys, the function of the Ni is to give preferential formation of NiAl3 and an AlCuNi complex, both of which are highly stable at elevated temperatures, and this gives Al alloy good creep resistance, for other composites, Fe have a similar effect, and Si and Mg can form a Mg2Si which give higher strength to Al alloy. Ti is added to increases the strength of Al alloy as well, but Ti has a function of grain refinement. Conclusion: Hardness can be improved by precipitation hardening, because the motion of dislocation can be resisted by the stress field of precipitates. In precipitation hardening of Al-Cu system, a number of stages will show in the development of the precipitates: 1. Supersaturated alpha phase 2. GP zone 3. The Ө’’ intermediate precipitate structure 4. The Ө’ intermediate precipitate structure 5. The stable Ө phase For Al-Cu alloys, the hardness increases at relatively low temperature due to the increasing amount of Ө’’ precipitates, but reduces at higher temperature due to the increasing amount of Ө’ precipitates.

References: William D. Callister, Jr. (2007) MATERIALS SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING: AN INTRODUCTION 7thed. United States of America: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Reed-Hill, Robert Ellis. (1992) Physical metallurgy principles 3rd ed. Boston: PWSKENT Publishing Co.

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