In-House Special Processes
Having in-house special process capabilities is an invaluable asset for any manufacturing operation. Not only does it bring greater control over quality and lead time, but it can also save costs by eliminating the need to outsource these processes.
With the right equipment and expertise on-site, you can be sure that your products are produced with precision and accuracy. In addition, this capability provides greater flexibility when meeting customer requirements, as adjustments may be made more quickly if needed, preventing any problems that may arise due to delays or communication issues.
Aerospace Manufacturing offers a variety of in-house special processes, including heat treating, non-destructive testing (NDT), plating, and tool & die making. These additional processes achieve greater variable control, help reduce reliance on subcontractors, and deliver orders with faster lead times. Learn more about our in-house secondary services and how they can help you.
Heat treatment is the process of heating and cooling metals to get the required characteristics. Heat treatment is applicable for both ferrous and nonferrous metals to prepare them for their intended end use.
There are several heat treatment methods to select from. Each provides unique qualities. The following are the most common heat treatment methods in the industry.
- Tempering: Tempering occurs when a metal is heated just below its critical temperature, then air-cooled. This process relieves internal stresses and increases toughness.
- Hardening: Hardening involves heating the metal above its critical temperature to increase its tensile strength. Then, the metal must be quenched and cooled at a controlled rate.
- Case hardening: Case hardening is a form of hardening that only affects the outer layer of the metal.
- Precipitation hardening: This process can only be performed on some alloys, particularly those that contain titanium, copper, phosphorus, or aluminum. Precipitation hardening heats the metal until these elements solidify, enhancing the strength of the overall metal.
- Annealing: Annealing softens metals so they contain less internal stress and are more ductile for machining purposes.
At Aerospace Manufacturing, our product’s custom heat treatment processes are based on specific applications for intended industries to achieve high-quality results.
Heat treatment is used for several reasons. Some processes soften the metal, while others improve its hardness. Heat-treating processes may also impact materials’ electrical and thermal conductivity.
Some heat treatment procedures alleviate strains caused by previous cold working operations. Others give metals favorable chemical characteristics. The ideal process is determined by the type of metal and the desired qualities.
A metal may be subjected to many heat treatment processes throughout manufacturing. For example, some superalloys used in aircraft manufacturing may go through up to six separate heat treatment processes to optimize them for aerospace applications.
Electroplating, also known as electrodeposition, is the most popular method of coating metal parts. Electroplating involves depositing a thin metallic layer onto the surface of a component using an ionized electrolytic solution.
At Aerospace Manufacturing, we can produce cadmium, cadmium fluoborate, and passivation.
- Cadmium plating: Cadmium plating is one of our in-house plating and finishing process that offers excellent corrosion protection to various metals. It’s also highly resistant to wear and tear, making it ideal for applications requiring elevated performance levels.
- Cadmium fluoborate: This offers superior resistance to corrosion and wear, making it ideal for parts used in the automotive, aerospace, marine, and other industries.
- Passivation: Used when treating metal surfaces to prevent corrosion, usually through an acid bath. It works by removing any contaminants on the surface of the metal and creating a thin oxide layer that helps protect it from further oxidation.
Industrial plating may be used for a variety of reasons, including:
- Creating a priming coat to facilitate paint adhesion
- Improving wear resistance and strengthening the substrate
- Minimizing the effects of friction
Non-Destructive Testing (NDT)
Non-destructive testing (NDT) is a technique used in industry to analyze the qualities of a material, component, structure, or system for characteristic variations, faults, and discontinuities without causing damage to the original part. It is employed in various applications and sectors, including automotive, aerospace, marine, and oil and gas.
NDT does not harm or break test pieces, enabling them to be fixed rather than replaced should any issues be discovered. It is also relatively safe for operators, as most techniques are harmless to people. However, some tests, such as radiographic testing, must be conducted under stringent settings to protect people, buildings, components, and machinery.
Non-destructive testing is also a very accurate inspection method since the tests are reproducible, and various tests may be performed in conjunction to correlate findings. Compared to destructive testing, NDT is more cost-effective since there is no need to fully replace test items.
Tool & Die Making
Our tool & die-making is an integral part of our in-house capabilities and has a long history within manufacturing. It involves producing components, tools, and molds used to create parts required for different industrial processes, such as automotive manufacturing or aerospace engineering.
We use specialized computer numerically controlled (CNC) equipment to generate the exact dimensions required for the parts to be used in production. The use of CAD (Computer Aided Design) software and 3D modeling programs create accurate designs that meet each jobs’ requirements.
Aerospace Manufacturing In-House Special Processes
Aerospace Manufacturing performs various specific manufacturing procedures in-house to benefit our customers with better variable control, decreased dependency on subcontractors, and shorter lead times. Contact us for more information about our capabilities, or request a quote today.