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Aircraft Materials and Processes

Heat Treatment Terms- Critical Range- Critical range, applied to steel, refers to the range of temperature between 1300 degree F and 1600 degree F. When steel passes through this temperature range, its internal structure is altered. Annealing- Annealing is the process of heating steel above the critical range, holding it at that temperature until it is uniformly heated and the grain is refined, and then cooling it very slowly. Normalizing- Normalizing is similar to annealing, but the steel is allowed to cool in still air a method that is somewhat faster than annealing cooling. Normalizing applied only to steel. Heat Treatment- consists of a series of operations which have as their aim the improvement of the physical properties of a material. In the case of steel these operations are hardening (Which is composed of heating and quenching) and temperature. Hardening- Hardening of steel is done by heating the metal to a temperature above the critical range and then quenching it. Quenching- Quenching is the immersion of the heated metal in a liquid, usually either oil or water, to accelerate its cooling. Tempering- is the reheating of hardened steel to a temperature below the critical range, followed by cooling as desired. Carburizing- is the addition of carbon to steel by heating it at a high temperature while in contact with a carbonaceous material in either solid, liquid, or gaseous form. Casehardening- consists of carburizing, followed by suitable heat treatment to harden the material.

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