During a manufacturing process, some materials need to go through processes that change their structure. There are numerous ways of changing the structure of materials, however, in this article, our main concern will be on heat treatment. Heat treatment is one of the main ways of altering the structure of materials during manufacturing. The procedure mainly involves controlling heat and cooling temperatures of a metal to change its physical properties so as to use them in large manufacturing processes. Moreover, heat treatments relieve stresses by making the parts of a metal easier to weld, hence increasing the strength, ductility, and flexibility of the metal.
Heat treatment services are numerous. The following are the common heat treatment services used in most industries, these include annealing and solution annealing, hardening and tempering, case harden, hot isotactic pressing, among others. In annealing heat treatment process, the materials are heated up to the desired temperatures, then cooled down. The cooling can either be rapid or slow depending on the type of material used. By using the process, the grain structure of the material is refined hence making it uniform and easier to work with.
On the other hand, in hardening process, the materials are heated to temperatures above nine hundred degrees Celsius before they are cooled down quickly. In order to introduce a degree of ductility, the material is further heated and cooled through a process known as tempering, thereby making it tougher and less likely to crack when under heavy loads. This method is highly applicable in the steel pipe industry since it boosts the mechanical properties of the metals, hence facilitating safe use of the materials transported including water, oil, and gas.
The other essential heat treatment service is case hardening. In some processes, it is recommended to have a soft ductile core with a hard outer part. The outer part can also be wear resistant, thereby able to withstand wear and tear. In addition, case hardening focus on protecting the inner part of a material by making its outer layer stronger.
In the event that you want to use gas in heat treatment, you can consider choosing hot static pressing as it uses inert gases at high temperatures and very high pressure, thereby allowing the occurrence of plastic deformation, creep and diffusion. The process is mainly used to improve the mechanical properties of a material by compressing the gasses that might be present in the material. This process is mainly used in stainless steel implants, medical industry and in making aircraft engines and components. This website has more info: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metallurgy.