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Difference between aluminum 6061 and aluminum 5052

What is aluminum 6061?

Aluminum 6061 is an alloy with major alloying of silicon and manganese. Also known as alloy 61S developed in 1935. Aluminum 6061 is considered one of the most commonly extruded alloys. Having a medium to high strength, with good corrosion resistance, great brazability, and weldability. Preferable in a variety of applications. Also, aluminum 6061 is considered as a medium to high heat treatable alloy with limited formability in T6 but good formability in T4. Whereas Aluminum 5052 is primarily alloyed with chromium and manganese. Having great resistance to corrosion against marine and industrial atmosphere as well as seawater in H32 temperature. Aluminum 5052 is considered a medium to high strength alloy. Aluminum 5052 has a slightly higher strength compared to aluminum 5251. Also, this alloy has great workability, excellent corrosion resistance, remarkable fatigue strength, and excellent resistance to saltwater these qualities of the alloy make it preferable on a great scale in various industries.

Chemical compositions of aluminum 6061:

  • Magnesium – 0.8% (min) 1.2% (max)
  • Silicon – 0.4% (min) 0.8% (max)
  • Iron – 0.7%
  • Copper – 0.15%
  • Magnesium – 0.15%
  • Chromium – 0.04% (min) 0.35% (max)
  • Zinc – 0.25%
  • Titanium – 0.15%

Chemical compositions of aluminum 5052

  • Manganese – 0.10 %
  • Iron – 0.40 %
  • Copper – 0.10 %
  • Magnesium – 2.20 % (min) 2.80 % (max)
  • Silicon – 0.25 %
  • Zinc –0.10 %
  • Chromium – 0.15 % (min) 0.35 % (max)
  • Others (each) – 0.05 %
  • Others (total) – 0.15 %
  • Aluminum – balance

What are the Applications and uses of aluminum 6061?

Aluminum 6061 has a wide range of applications in various fields like marine, defense, automotive, rail car, truck, trailer, valves, fittings, welded structures, storage tanks, machinery and equipment, fixtures, tooling plate, heat sinks, heat exchangers, fasteners, furniture, electronic parts, chemical equipment, aircraft, frames, welded assemblies, military bridges, commercial bridges, rail coaches, shipbuilding operations, boiler making, exercise equipment, motorboats, transport operations, rivets, helicopter rotor skins, pylons and tower, building and construction, sign structures, electrical fittings, hydraulic components, transmission towers, scaffolding, etc.

What are the application and uses of aluminum 5052?

Aluminum 5052 is commonly used in fuel tanks, marine boats, rivets, pressure vessels, desalination units, irrigation, chemical industry, welded tubes, architectural paneling, road signs, nameplates, containers, boiler making, Treadplate, marine equipment, hardware signs, medical equipment, hydraulic tubes, electronic chassis, electronic enclosures, boat hulls, drums, tanks, welded structures, fuel tanks, home appliances, fences, food equipment, aircraft tube, refrigerators, storm shutters, flooring panels, kitchen cabinets, clock plates, fan blades, fans, street lights, fuel lines, truck, bus and aircraft manufacturing, wire, containers, chemical drums, mobile devices, laptops, computers, etc.

What are the main forms of aluminum 6061?

Aluminum 6061 is commonly formed in, Aluminum sheets, Aluminum bars, Aluminum angles, Aluminum plate etc.

What are the main forms of Aluminum 5052?

Treadplate/patterened sheet, Plate, Extrusions, sheet are some of the forms in which aluminum 5052 is supplied.

Mechanical properties of aluminum 6061:
  • Ultimate tensile strength – 310 MPa
  • Tensile yield strength – 276 MPa
  • Shear modulus – 26 GPA
  • Modulus of elasticity – 68.9 GPA
  • Shear strength – 207 MPa
  • Fatigue strength – 96.5 MPa
Mechanical properties of aluminum 5052:
  • Ultimate tensile strength – 228MPa
  • Tensile yield strength – 193 MPa
  • Elongation at break – 12%
  • Poisson’s ratio – 0.33
  • Fatigue strength – 117 MPa
  • Shear modulus – 25.9 GPA
  • Shear strength – 138 MPa
Fabrication of aluminum 6061:
  • workability – cold: good
  • machinability: acceptable
Fabrication of aluminum 5052
  • workability – cold: good
  • machinability: acceptable
Temper types of aluminum 6061:
  • T6 – solution heat-treated and artificially aged
Temper types of aluminum 5052:
  • H32 – work-hardened by rolling then stabilized by low-temperature heat treatment to quarter hard
Weldability of aluminum 6061:
  • Weldability – gas: good
  • Weldability – arc: very good
  • Weldability – resistance: good
  • Solderability: good
  • Brazability: good
  • Annealing can be performed 775°F for 2 to 3 hours followed by air cooling and controlled cooling at 10°C to 260°C per hour in case of aluminum 6061.
  • Annealing can be done at 343°C followed by air cooling in the case of aluminum 5052.
  • Aluminum 6061 can be hot worked between 260°C to 372°C and can be cold worked at 0 temper conditions, also it can be formed in T 4 and T 6 tempers.
  • Aluminum 5052 can be hot worked from 510°C down to 250°C. and can be easily cold worked and can be formed by using spinning and drawing methods, in some cases annealing may be required depending on the extent of spinning.
  • In the annealed condition, aluminum 6061 can be easily worked and formed. In order to perform operations like spinning, deep drawing, stamping, and bending standard methods can be used.
  • At room temperature, aluminum 5052 can be easily formed. However, repeated or constant cold working can reduce the formability of aluminum 5052 in most cases.
  • Aluminum 6061 can be normally forged between 750°F to 900°F (233°C to 372°C).
  • aluminum 5052 is forged from 950°F (510°C) down to 500°F (260°C).

What are the benefits of aluminum 6061 and aluminum 5052?

Aluminum grade 6061 is one of the most commonly applicable alloys with great strength, having excellent workability, along with high corrosion resistance in the various corrosive atmosphere and good and remarkable forming capacity as well as significant welding and heat treatment along with excellent forging, hot working, cold working, annealing, and aging properties. Aluminum 6061 is considered one of the most preferable alloys for general use. Also, it has an excellent response to anodizing, including hard coat, clear and color dye, etc.
Aluminum 5052 is one of the preferred selections for a structure that needs to handle excessive vibrations, commonly used in sheets, plates, and tube form. This alloy has great formability which makes it possible to shape the material in various products. Aluminum 5052 also participates well in hot working and cold working processes at various temperatures accordingly. Aluminum 5052 is suitable for shipbuilding purposes due to its resistance to seawater also it has applications in hydraulic tubes, milk crates, fencings, aircraft tubes, kitchen cabinets, etc. Aluminum 5052 has great corrosion resistance which makes it preferable in various fields on a wide range. Also, it has good efficiency and durability.

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