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Effect of Heat Treatment on Aluminium Alloys

Heat Treatment on Aluminum Alloys

Heat treatment on aluminum alloys is a delicate and precise process. By controlling parameters such as temperature and time, this process can be used to relieve stress in metal parts and age-harden aluminum components. Let’s take a deeper look into the impact of heat treatment on stress relief and the aging of aluminum alloys.

Heat Treatment Basics

Heat treatment is an industrial process that alters the physical properties of a material through controlled heating and cooling cycles. It enables engineers to create stronger components with tailored mechanical properties for specific applications. When it comes to aluminum alloys, heat treatment can be used to increase strength by aging or to reduce stress from machining operations by relieving stress.

Stress Relieving with Heat Treatment

Stress relief is a type of heat treatment that reduces residual stresses in metals caused by machining or welding operations. For example, when cutting or drilling holes in a part, there may be residual stresses associated with the process that can cause deformation over time. To prevent this deformation, engineers can use high-temperature heat treatments to remove these residual stresses without affecting other mechanical properties such as hardness or yield strength.

Adding Strength with Age Hardening

Age hardening is another form of heat treatment used to increase strength in aluminum alloys. This technique involves heating an alloy at low temperatures followed by rapid cooling—a process known as precipitation hardening—which causes precipitation particles (usually copper) to form within the alloy matrix and strengthens it. For example, aging 7075-T6 aluminum (an aerospace-grade alloy) at 175°C for 8-12 hours will result in increased strength due to precipitation hardening. This makes 7075-T6 ideal for applications requiring high strength and toughness, such as aircraft frames and landing gear components.


Heat treatment is an invaluable tool for improving the mechanical properties of aluminum alloys for specific applications. Stress relief can help prevent deformation, while age hardening increases strength without compromising other important qualities like ductility or corrosion resistance. In order to get the most out of either technique, however, it’s important to understand how different parameters, such as temperature and time, affect each process so that you can tailor your heat treatments accordingly and get the best results possible!

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