SYMPOSIA PAPER Published: 01 January 1997

The Effect of Thermal Exposure on the Fracture Behavior of Aluminum Alloys Intended for Elevated Temperature Service


Because of their ease of fabricability, durability, and good specific properties, precipitation-hardened aluminum alloys have been the materials of choice for subsonic aircraft for over 50 years. At the present time, precipitation-hardening alloys are being evaluated for use in elevated temperature applications such as supersonic transport aircraft. These applications require stability of mechanical properties, implying stable microstructures. In this study, it has been shown that for three materials of interest, microstructural evolution at relatively low temperatures may result in complex changes in mechanical properties with fracture resistance being a salient example. Changes in amounts and kinds of grain boundary fracture, probably related to growth of grain boundary precipitate phases or segregation of embrittling species to the boundaries, appear to dominate the behavior.

Author Information

Reynolds, AP
University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC
Crooks, RE
Analytical Services and Materials, Hampton, VA
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Developed by Committee: E08
Pages: 191–205
DOI: 10.1520/STP16324S
ISBN-EB: 978-0-8031-5356-1
ISBN-13: 978-0-8031-2413-4