Aluminum Extrusions for Automotive Crash Applications
One of the main applications for aluminum extrusions in the automotive sector is crash structures including crash rails, crash cans, bumpers and structural body components. The objective is usually to optimize the energy absorption capability for a given structure weight. The ability to extrude thin wall multi-void extrusions contributes to this goal. However, the alloy used also plays a significant role in terms of the ability to produce the required geometry, strength - which to a large extent controls the energy absorption capability and the “ductility” or fracture behavior which controls the strain that can be applied locally during crush deformation before cracking. This paper describes results of a test program to examine the crush behavior of a range of alloys typically supplied for automotive applications as a function of processing parameters including artificial ageing and quench rate.