March 7, 2023

Process Intensification for Nanocomposite Aluminum Extrusions - CRADA 411 (Final Report)


The project evaluated the feasibility of using Shear Assisted Processing and Extrusion (ShAPE) for the fabrication of extrusions with a diameter of 0.5” and higher from an Al-alloy powder feedstock that contains nanoscale second phases for achieving enhanced elevated temperature strength. PNNL has previously extruded 0.2” diameter rods with high strength aluminum alloy powder Al-12.4TM. This project aimed to scale the process up to a diameter of 1.0” at a length of >24” while retaining the excellent mechanical properties achieved for the 0.2” diameter rods. As part of the project, extrusion dies were fabricated with various design features. As an example, scroll features on the tool die face was introduced to enhance powder mixing, and reduce extrusion load. Varying extrusion ratios were used to obtain better microstructural homogeneity. Use of tool design features together with the optimization of process parameters helped in the fabrication of extrusions that were up to 48” long with a diameter of 0.5” using Al-12.4 TM powder feedstock in a two-step process involving cold compaction followed by extrusion. Extrusions with a diameter of 1.0” could also be fabricated, but limitations on the extent of consolidation were experienced as a result of the torque and ram force capacity of the current ShAPE machine.

Published: March 7, 2023


Whalen S.A., S. Jana, J.T. Darsell, T. Wang, and J.A. Silverstein. 2020. Process Intensification for Nanocomposite Aluminum Extrusions - CRADA 411 (Final Report) Richland, WA: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.

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