Heat-Treatment Process Optimization Using Dilatometry Technique and Simulation Tools
Any metal component undergoes various treatments to get desired shape and desired properties. Some of the important properties are strength, hardness, % elongation etc. which comes under mechanical properties. These properties can be easily achieved through heat-treatment process. Typical example of heat-treatment processes are hardening and tempering in case of steel and aging process in case of aluminium alloys. Some of the new emerging materials viz. micro alloy steel does not require any hardening and tempering if cooling rate is maintained. Heat-treatment cycle depends on material grade and its alloying elements. A heat-treatment cycle for any grade is generally fixed based on conventional methods but they are not optimized. The need of hour is to optimize the heat-treatment cycle to improve productivity and energy consumption. Dilatometer is used to optimize heat-treatment cycle on sample level whereas simulation tools can be used for component level.