Aluminium Lithium Alloys
Aluminium Lithium Alloys were designed for use in aerospace and high performance applications reqiring high strength, low density, high stiffness, superior damage tolerance, excellent corrosion resistance and weldability.
Li additions increase the strength and modulus of Al alloys while lowering their density. Their key advantage over standard aluminium alloys is a lower density combined with improved elastic modulus. Resistance to fatigue cracking is also generally superior to standard 2000 and 7000 series aluminium alloys. Newer (third generation) aluminium lithium alloys have improved corrosion resistance and greater toughness than their predecessors.
These properties make aluminium lithium particularly suitable to any application where weight to strength ratio is critical and fatigue cracking is a concern. Aerospace and motorsport are typical application areas as well as space exploration where these alloys have been extensively used.
High strengths can be achieved in lithium alloys through precipitation heat treatments that are similar in nature to those used in more standard alloys. However, these processes along with many other aspects of this group of alloys continue to be developed and improved.
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