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Solution Annealing / Solution Treatment Heat Treating

Solution annealing services for stainless steel and metal alloys

Solution annealing (also referred to as solution treating) is a common heat treatment process for many different families of materials. Stainless steels, aluminum alloys, nickel-based superalloys, titanium alloys, and some copper-based alloys all may require solution annealing.

The purpose of solution annealing is to dissolve any precipitates present in the material and transform the material at the solution annealing temperature into a single phase structure. At the end of the solution annealing process, the material is rapidly quenched down to room temperature to avoid any precipitation from occurring during cooling through lower temperature ranges where precipitates may form. The single phase solution annealed material will be in a soft state after treatment. 

The solution annealing treatment is a pre-cursor that is required prior to age hardening / precipitation hardening. The single phase microstructure created during solution annealing is required prior to age hardening, such that only the precipitates formed during age hardening will be present in the final product. The composition, size and quantities of those precipitates formed during aging will determine the final product's hardness, strength, and mechanical properties after aging. It is critical that the structure be properly solution treated prior to aging in order to meet all of these requirements.

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