Choosing metals for high temperature applications

In the world of industrial applications, you need the right metal for high temperature settings. This doesn’t simply come down to choice though. What you have here is a critical decision. It is one influencing the longevity, safety, and efficiency of applications. You also need to consider things like tube swaging and bending; some materials are better for it than others.

The thing to remember is high temperature environments come with distinct challenges. These include material deterioration, possible corrosion, and extreme heat. As a result, it calls for a careful selection of metals capable of withstanding these demands.

You need to understand the dynamics of high temperature projects as well as the attributes of metals that thrive in such states. It is vital for industries such as power generation and aerospace. The correct choice of metal can mean the difference between a fruitful application and a project that could face catastrophic failure. What we want to do here is dive more deeply into the subject.

What are high temperatures?

Tube swagingWe are talking about settings where you expose materials to temperatures exceeding ambient conditions. Normally, they are above 260ºC. It is essential to pick metals suitable for such conditions. The temperatures can undermine the performance and structural integrity of many conventional metals.

Industries that commonly operate in these conditions include aerospace and power generation. Jet engine turbines for example become exposed to extreme heat during flight. As a result, you need metals capable of withstanding it and maintaining strength. In the automotive industry, you need the metals for engine components. The same goes for exhaust systems.

Failure to utilise metals capable of withstanding the temperatures causes faster deterioration. Other problems include lost mechanical properties and full-on failure. You need to understand how high temperature settings influence materials. This is to guarantee the safety and reliability of applications. Talk to us if you’d like to use our tube swaging services.

The key properties

Specific properties become crucial when choosing metals for high temperature projects. Corrosion resistance and coefficient of thermal expansion are among them. As are thermal conductivity and melting point.

A metal’s melting point is the temperature when it changes to liquid from solid. To preserve strength under extreme heat, you need metals with high melting points.

A metal with decent thermal conductivity can transfer heat fast. This maintains uniform temperature throughout the component and stops hot spots. Cooling systems and heat exchangers depend on this property.

A metal’s coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) increases when it is heated. Metals possessing a low CTE are best for high temperature settings. They will undergo minimal thermal expansion. This lowers the danger of deformation and preserves their dimensions.

High temperatures are capable of accelerating corrosion. So, it is best to use metals that resist it. That will ensure they have a longer lifespan. Our tube swaging services can maintain the corrosion resistance of metals.

What to use?

We will finish by going over a couple of high temperature materials you could use.

Stainless steel

This is an alloy mainly composed of nickel, chromium, and iron. It is exceptionally resistant to corrosion and heat because of the oxide layer. So, it preserves its structural integrity and appearance in spite of temperatures up to roughly 593ºC.

High temperature projects benefit immensely from stainless steel. It retains strength and resists scaling. At the same time, it is tough and ductile. Aerospace uses it for energy components and automobiles for exhaust systems.

Titanium alloys

These materials are celebrated for their excellent corrosion resistance and strength-to-weight ratio. They are significantly lighter than steel. Although, they can put up with temperatures as high as 316ºC. Alloying elements like vanadium and aluminium amplify the temperature resistance and strength.

Due to their strength and lightweight features, the aerospace industry likes to use titanium alloys. It does so for things like airframes, discs, and compressor blades.

Come to us for tube swaging and more

At Multiform Tubes Engineering Ltd, we’re known as the place to turn to whenever people need to alter tubing. There are benefits to using the likes of swaging. Examples include short cycle times, smooth, circular finishes, and no material loss. You can use the techniques to adapt tube so it can suit more applications.

So, if tube swaging is something that interests you or you need to alter tubing in other ways, please let us know. We’d love to help.