Aluminium Heat Treatment

Aluminium is the most abundant metal in the Earth's crust and its alloys must be correctly heat treated to achieve their maximum properties. If you are casting aluminium, consider Hipping the component because casting of metal of creates flaws in the completed metal that can be resolved through Hot Isostatic Pressing (Hipping).  Not all alloys of Aluminium benefit from heat treatment. Those which are heat treatable can achieve an increase in strength and hardness by precipitation hardening through correct heat treatment.  We also specialise in annealing aluminium.

Solution Treatment

This is applicable to the heat treatable alloys and involves heating the alloy to the appropriate temperature to take the alloying constituents into solution. These constituents are held in solution by rapid quenching, usually in water. Subsequent heat treatment at very low temperatures i.e. results in controlled precipitation of the constituents thereby achieving increased hardness and strength. 

Time at temperature for solution treatment depends on the type of alloy and the furnace load. Sufficient time must be allowed to take the alloys into solution if optimum properties are to be obtained. 

Alloys of Aluminium are very rapidly quenched after Solution treatment The usual quenching medium is water at room temperature. In some circumstances slower quenching is desirable, where forced air blast, hot water or polymers can be used. 

Finally the alloy is hardened by the process of 
Ageing, or Precipitation Hardening. This can involve heating the alloy up to a very low temperature <200°C and holding it there for several hours. Some Aluminium alloys age naturally at room temperature over several days.

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Commonly Treated Materials:
  • 2xxx Series Alloys
  • 6xxx Series Alloys
  • 7xxx Series Alloys


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Registered Address.: Aalberts Surface Technologies Heat Ltd, Blackhorse Road, Letchworth. SG6 1HD 

Tel: 01462 472147