Powdermet Inc., Ohio, USA, has announced that it has made significant advancements to improve performance levels of its forged nanocomposite aluminium alloys. Working with the US Army and the National Science Foundation, Powdermet’s MComP(TM) micro-nanocomposite aluminium alloys have achieved 30-50% higher ductility than state-of-the-art high strength aluminium alloys such as aluminium lithium.
Powdermet has devised a powder metallurgy process allowing the retention of nano-crystallites and ductile phases throughout the powder forging process, resulting in near-net shape, high strength aluminium materials having over 16% elongation to failure strengths, exceeding 350MPa (50KSI). Competing aluminium-lithium high strength alloys have tensile strengths of 50-70ksi at 8-12% elongation, whereas the nanocomposite materials are showing 50-72ksi with 7-16% elongation depending on forging conditions.
Powdermet has also shown nanocomposite aluminium alloys with up to 200ksi strengths with 1-2% elongation. Current product development goals are to continue process development to achieve a 100ksi, 8% ductility system that is cost-effective and utilises no costly strategic or rare-earth alloying additions. The company also plans to demonstrate repeatable large cross-section part manufacturing using its unique small footprint 5000-ton press and related equipment in its newly acquired and refurbished multimillion dollar Deformation Processing Centre.
Posted by: Paul Whittaker, Editor ipmd.net, [email protected]