Heat Treating Metal Components
Heat treating is the process used to impart special qualities to metals and alloys (hardness, strength, ductility, etc.). When heat and subsequent cooling are applied to metals in their solid state, the physical and structural properties (but not the chemical composition) of these metals are changed.
Different metals respond to treatment at different temperatures. Each metal has a specific chemical composition, so changes in physical and structural properties take place at different, critical temperatures. Depending on the temperature used, these changes can represent a change in grain size, increase in toughness, removal of internal stresses, or formation of a hard surface on a ductile core.
In addition to changes induced by heat, the rate and method of cooling have an effect on the structural properties. For example, in carbon steels, a rapid cooling will produce a metal with a hard structure, while a slow cooling will produce the opposite effect. Even small percentages of elements in the metal composition, such as carbon, will greatly determine the temperature, time, method and rate of cooling that needs to be used in the heat treating process.
Curtiss-Wright Surface Technologies' heat treating group specializes in the thermal processing of metal components used in a wide range of industries. We have the expertise and equipment to handle demanding project requirements and materials that include, but are not limited to:
- Carbon steels
- Alloy steels
- Cast irons
- Tool steels
- Corrosion resistant steels
- Stainless steels
Each of our nine facilities uses programmable controllers that set temperatures and cycle times and monitor the heat treating process to assure a homogenous, correctly treated product.
Our attention to detail includes an on-going cost analysis that assures you the most economical approach with the highest standards of quality and delivery. By involving us at the planning stage of your project, we also can recommend the best configuration, the best alloy and the best thermal process to meet your design requirements.
To supplement our heat treating capabilities and further enhance the performance of your parts, Curtiss-Wright Surface Technologies performs shot peening processes to improve fatigue strength and/or resistance to stress corrosion cracking and applies engineered protective coatings that provide lubricity, wear and corrosion resistance, insulation, friction reduction and a variety of other improved operating characteristics.
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