Choosing the right alloys, whether aluminium or magnesium, is crucial for achieving the best end result. Numerous factors play a role. The key question is: Where and for what purpose is the aerospace customer going to use the components?
Alloys for the aerospace industry
Many aerospace customers ask for a specific alloy when placing an order. We then always respond with the following counter-question: Why do you want to make the product specifically with this alloy? Another alloy might be a better choice to consider for the aerospace industry.
Choosing alloys for the aerospace industry and other sectors depends on several factors, the most important of which is the purpose of the product. This key question then leads on to other further questions:
- How strong does the final product need to be?
- Is the component going to be visible or not? In other words: Is it important that the surface looks good?
- How important is the elasticity?
- Does it need to be corrosion resistant?
- Is the conductivity of heat and/or electricity an important consideration?
- In which temperature will the end product be used?
The answers to these questions from our aerospace customers are important to be able to choose the right alloys. Another factor also plays a role: the construction of the product. Complex products with, for example, small cores, thin wall thicknesses, and narrow tolerances are not possible to make with a hard and less malleable alloy.
6061, 6082, and 7075 alloys for the aerospace industry
There are hundreds of aluminium alloys. Mifa offers a standard range of fourteen aluminium alloys with which we produce more than 95% of our products. Our standard range consists of alloys from the following series: 1xxx, 3xxx, 6xxx, and 7xxx.
The 6xxx series
These alloys contain silicon and magnesium. We work with the following alloys: 6060, 6063, 6005A, 6061, and 6082. We also work with the following specials: 6066 and 6463. In general, the more magnesium and the more silicon that are added to the aluminium, the stronger the end product will be. These alloys are frequently chosen as they have good weldability, corrosion resistance, machinability, anodizability, and electrical conductivity. 6061 and 6082 are alloys commonly used in the aerospace industry because of their extra strength. These are alloys that are prescribed by the aviation authorities. These alloys are particularly used by Airbus and Boeing for aircraft interiors.
The 7xxx series
Our standard range includes 7020, 7022, and 7075 from the 7xxx series. As well as aluminium, the 7020 consists of magnesium and zinc. Copper is also added to the 7022 and 7075. These alloys can be hardened and are some of the strongest we have. However, once again, they have reduced malleability and are therefore not suitable for complex products that require high precision. 7075 is a very strong alloy that is commonly used in the aerospace industry for structural parts.