Solution Treatment and Age Hardening
The Aluminum T6 process is comprised of solution treating which includes heating, then quickly quenching, followed by aging to develop final properties. The keys to success are accurate temperature control and fast, precise transfers between steps.
An example of this is explained below.
This batch of 44 foot aircraft structural shapes are heated in a 63 foot, high-flow forced convection batch furnace with an integral hoist and swing bottom door. The load’s uniformity is +/- 4 °F. To achieve the quick quench, the swing door opens and the load is rapidly lowered into a 70 foot quench tank. The picture shows a product load being positioned for connecting to the furnace’s hoist cable.
The superb temperature uniformity of the solution furnace and the uniform quench produce minimal distortion in this very large component.
This system offers very high production in a very compact foot print.
Snowmobile engine heads are processed in 1,000 pound loads through an L-shaped four-step system with these features:
solution treating furnace
high-performance quench tank
chain conveyor indexing between stations