Aluminium, which is the metal of today and tomorrow, is one of the most common elements in nature and, after steel, the most commonly used metal in engineering structures. The density of aluminium (2.71 g / cm3) is one third of the density of steel (7.83 g / cm3). The yield strengths of some aluminium alloys exceed 500 MPa, which is above the yield strengths of many types of steel.
Aluminium and properties
• Aluminium is light. It weighs only a third of the weight of a steel material with the same volume. They are often used in applications where lightness is required.
• Aluminium is resistant to weather, food and many liquids and gases used in everyday life.
• Aluminium; With its anodic oxidation and electrostatic powder coating applications, it creates an attractive appearance in the application areas. The lifespan of these applications is quite long.
• Aluminium is an elastic material. Therefore it is insensitive to sudden impacts. Nor does its durability decrease at low temperatures.
• The electrical and thermal conductivity of aluminium is lower than that of copper. However, the comparison of the values for the specific electrical conductivity (electrical conductivity / density) and the specific thermal conductivity (thermal conductivity / density) seems to be better than for copper.
• All methods such as casting, forging, rolling, pressing, extruding and drawing can be used to form the aluminium.
• In corrosive environments, the surface of aluminium is covered with an oxide layer to ensure the corrosion resistance of aluminium. Because of this property, aluminium can be used in many corrosive environments.
• The ability of aluminium to mold hot and cold is good. Aluminium profiles with a very mixed geometric structure can be produced using the extrusion process. It can be used in packaging processes by producing foils with a thickness of several micrometers.
• Aluminium can be made in various colors by electrolytic oxidation. This process, called anodizing, can be used to produce both corrosion-resistant and optical products in different colors.
Aluminium and alloys
The mechanical, physical and chemical properties of aluminium alloys vary depending on the alloying elements and microstructure. The main alloying elements of aluminium are copper, manganese, silicon, magnesium and zinc. Most aluminium alloys can be heat treated.
Aluminium alloys are classified with four letters. This classification is as follows:
• 1XXX: pure aluminium. It is widely used in the electrical and chemical industries.
• 2XXX: Al-Cu alloys. The main alloying element is copper. Other alloying elements, mainly magnesium, are also found and are widely used in the aerospace industry where high strengths are required.
3XXX: Al-Mn alloys. The main alloying element is manganese. It is used in pipes, liquid tanks and architectural applications.
• 4XXX: Al-Si alloys. The main alloying element is silicon. They are alloys with a low coefficient of thermal expansion, high abrasion resistance and corrosion resistance. It is used in welded structures, in plate production, in auto parts production.
• 5XXX: Al-Mg alloys. The main alloying element is magnesium. The hardness and strength increase with increasing magnesium content, but the ductility decreases. Because it is highly resistant to ship corrosion, it is used to manufacture structures that are used in this environment.
• 6XXX: Al-Mg-Si alloys. The main alloying elements are magnesium and silicon. These high-forming alloys are often used in the manufacture of extruded parts.
• 7XXX: Al-Zn alloys. Copper is the basic alloy element, magnesium, chromium and zirconium are additional alloys
• elements are. The 7XXX series is the highest strength of aluminium alloys. It is used in the manufacture of aircraft parts and in other places where high strength is required.
• 8XXX: Al-Li alloys: The main alloying element is lithium, and tin additions can be made. This material, which is used in particular in aircraft and space structures, has good fatigue resistance and good toughness properties.
• 9XXX: Newly found alloys (example: lithium alloys)
Aluminium and the future
With the development of industry and technology, the use of aluminum is increasing. Aluminium is preferred for lighter, stronger, more efficient, more durable and consequently more economical products.
Aluminium is an indispensable material for aircraft, better buildings and bridges, power transmission lines and other technical applications, including space vehicles.
Aluminum industry; continues its research and development studies for new alloys, technological developments, production methods, product design and quality control.
Aluminium and the environment
All industrial applications have an impact on the environment. The aluminium industry is one of the least polluting industries. Aluminium production methods do not pollute the environment.