Prediction of Texture and Formability of Continuous Cast Aluminum Alloys

  • Zhai, Tongguang (PI)
  • Man, Chi Sing (CoI)
  • Morris, James (CoI)

Grants and Contracts Details


The main objectives of the proposed research work are outlined below: • To study quantitatively the evolution of texture and microstructure during cold rolling of continuous cast AA 3000 series aluminum alloy sheets, and during annealing of these cold rolled aluminum alloys. • To quantify the effect of alloy composition, initial texture and microstructure on the evolution of texture in these aluminum alloys. • To extend the approach recently advocated by Man to quantify the effects of texture, grain shape, and precipitate particles on formability and plastic anisotropy of these aluminum alloys. • To develop quantitative analytical relations that describe the evolution of texture and microstructure during the continuous cast processing of aluminum alloy sheets, thus rendering the prediction of their formability possible. Technical Merit: It has been a challenge, in the research field of texture and formability, to predict with sufficient accuracy the evolution of crystallographic texture during thermomechanical processing of metal sheets, and to quantify their formability by taking into account texture and microstructure parameters. From the point of view of optimizing the production process (to improve the mechanical properties of alloys, to reduce new alloy development time drastically, etc.), it is also essential to quantify the evolution of texture and microstructure in the alloys during thermomechanical processing. Attempts have been made to quantify texture evolution during annealing of aluminum alloys using a physically based model or an empirical equation (such as the Avrami equation), but large discrepancies between theoretical predictions and experimental results remain. Using an improved method to quantify texture volume fraction by uniquely defining the region of each texture component in Euler space, the PI and the co-PIs have recently demonstrated that the Avrami equation can be used to accurately quantify the evolution of texture during annealing as well as cold rolling of continuous cast (CC) AA 5000 series aluminum alloys. The goal of this proposed research project is to develop two mathematical models, one for quantification of texture evolution in CC Al alloy sheets as a function of processing parameters, and the other for prediction of formability and plastic anisotropy of these sheets by taking into account the effects of texture, grain shape, and precipitate particles. These models will show the effect of alloy composition, hot rolling procedure and homogenization practice on the evolution of texture during cold rolling and annealing. They will subsequently allow the prediction of formability both from a mechanical anisotropy point of view as well as from a limit strain consideration. It is anticipated that these models will be valuable in the optimization of the processing of continuous cast Al alloys and the development of Al alloys for industrial applications. Broad Impact: Aluminum sheet produced by continuous casting provides energy savings of over 25 percent and economic savings of 14 percent over sheet made from conventional direct chill (DC) cast ingots. The formability of CC Al alloys, however, is inferior to that of their DC counterparts. This research project, if funded, will help the aluminum industry significantly improve the formability of CC Al alloys by enabling the quantification of texture evolution and sheet formability during and after thermomechanical processing, respectively, and by optimization of processing parameters. The aluminum industry is the fifth largest employer in Kentucky. In terms of its economical impact, the aluminum industry is of strategic importance to Kentucky. This proposed project will also allow the PI to integrate his research into teaching activities by developing two laboratory projects, which are related to this research work, to train students in Al technology. The proposed project will help the PI realize his long-term career goal, i.e., to become one of the world.s leading authorities in the fields of macro- and micro-texture and its relation with materials properties, and to become an excellent educator. In his second year as Assistant Professor, he was selected as an outstanding teacher in Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering, University of Kentucky.
Effective start/end date8/1/047/31/08


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