Title

TEXTURE, MICROSTRUCTURE AND FORMABILITY OF ALUMINUM ALLOYS

Year of Publication

2001

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Document Type

Dissertation

College

Engineering

Department

Materials Science and Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. James G. Morris

Abstract

Texture, microstructure and formability were studied in Direct Chill Cast (DC) and Strip Cast (SC) aluminum alloys with regard to crystallographic anisotropy, the Portevin-Le Chatelier effect and aging softening behavior. It was found that material properties change greatly with manufacturing processes (DC vs. SC) and chemical composition (3xxx vs. 5 xxx alloys). DC cast hot band materials are usually fully recrystallized and have strong softening textures while SC hot band materials have a rolling structure with strong deformation textures. Softening textures cause 90 earing while deformation textures result in 45 earing after deep drawing. During cold rolling, 90 earing in DC cast hot band materials decreases and eventually changes to 45 earing after certain degrees of cold reduction. Correspondingly, the intensity of the softening texture components in DC cast hot band materials decreases while the intensity of deformation texture components increases with increasing degrees of cold reduction. These two kinds of textures interact and attempt to balance each other during cold rolling which produces resultant earing. However, this is not true for SC hot band materials since it's hard to obtain strong softening textures and thus 90 earing in these materials. 5 xxx Al-Mg alloys are more difficult to work than 3 xxx aluminum alloys. Elevated temperature annealing which greatly reduces the strength (hardness) improves significantly the workability of Al-Mg alloys. On the other hand, the Portevin-Le Chatelier effect and aging softening behavior are stronger in Al-Mg alloys than in 3xxx aluminum alloys and both increase with increasing cold reduction and with increasing Mg content. An apparent tensile anisotropy exists in as received SC hot band materials. The tensile yield strength (YS) is smaller in the QD (45 to the rolling direction), and larger in the RD (rolling direction) and the TD (transverse direction). There is no obvious difference in YS between these RD and TD directions. The average stress drop of serrations in the PLC effect, D s , is strongest in the TD, smallest in the RD with QD in between but closer to TD. However, no tensile anisotropy was observed in a fully recrystallized DC hot band or in solution treated SC hot band materials. It was found that a rolling structure favors mechanical anisotropy while a recrystallized structure prevents it. The tensile anisotropy is due to anisotropic distributions of microstructures, i.e., dislocations, precipitates and solute atoms. A random microstructure is associated with material that shows little or no mechanical anisotropy. An elongated or preferably orientated microstructure is associated with material with high mechanical anisotropy. Recovery thermal treatments at sufficiently high temperatures so that dislocation annihilation and microstructure rearrangement occurs when applied to the final gauge material also lowers mechanical anisotropy because of the reduction in intensity of the elongated (preferably orientated) microstructure. In addition, plastically deforming the material in a more homogenous manner (such as cross rolling as compared to straight rolling) produces a more uniform microstructure with an accompanying lower mechanical anisotropy.

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