5 high-quality CRMs to test various Aluminum industrial applications

Aluminum is known for being one of the lightest engineering metals that has a higher strength-to-weight ratio than steel. Pure aluminum is also a soft and flexible metal with high electrical/thermal conductivity and corrosion-resistant properties. To provide better strength to aluminum for more demanding applications, it is commonly alloyed with other metals, such as copper, zinc, magnesium, silicon, manganese, and/or lithium.

Aluminum alloy 6063 (AA6063) is a medium strength alloy, commonly used in extrusion applications. Grade 6063 has good mechanical properties and is also heat treatable and weldable. There are a variety of popular applications for this metal, including architectural applications, window frames, doors, roofs, sign frames, shop fittings, and irrigation tubing. The grade specs for AA6063 allow for the following compositional ranges: 0.2-0.6% Si, 0-0.35% Fe, 0.45-0.9% Mg, 0.1% max Cr, 0-0.1% for Cu, Mn, Ti and Zn. Our new MBH-AL6063-20 standard falls well within these ranges with Si=0.46%, Fe=0.156%, Mg=0.481%, Cr=0.0088%, and under 0.1% for Cu, Mn, Ti, and Zn. It is supplied in a 50mm x25mm disk for OES application, or as chips for easy digestion for liquid analysis techniques.

The other four new alloys have all been made specifically doped with measurable concentrations of typical trace/tramp elements. This allows them to be used to verify low-level analysis of these elements. They are also provided as either a disk with 65mm diam (25mm thick) or as chips for easy dissolution. This larger size allows for more sparks per polish, and less re-surfacing for OES techniques. The manufacturing process for these alloys also results in highly homogenous bars, so the composition will be very consistent throughout the sample.

AdobeStock_183250561Aluminum grade 6061 (AA6061) is the most commonly available aluminum alloy on the market. This grade is often used in applications where high strength is required, and the typical applications for AA6061 are general purpose or manufacturing needs including truck and marine components, furniture, pipelines, heavy-duty structures, railroad cars, and high-pressure applications. Our new MBH-AL6061-19 reference material meets the grade criteria elements with Mg=0.896%, Si=0.71%, Cu=0.247%, and Cr=0.254%. The COA also lists certified concentrations for 13 other elements, including Bi, Cd, Pb, and Sb.

Alloy 356.2 (AA356.2) is another high-strength aluminum alloy commonly used in aircraft applications. AA356.2 can also be used as a substitute for aluminum alloy 6061 if needed. Typically, this grade is used in pump housings, impellers, high-velocity blowers, and structural castings where high strength is required. Our new MBH-AL356.2-19 meets the grade requirements, with Fe=0.22%, Mg=0.39%, Si=6.9%, and Ti=0.185%. The COA for this alloy also lists certified values for an additional 16 elements including Bi, Ca, Cd, Co, Cr, Ga, and Sb.

Aluminum alloy 3104 (AA3104) is the most commonly used alloy for aluminum can bodies, due to its ability to be easily formed, and yet maintain its strength in the finished form. Our new MBH-AL3104-20 standard meets all grade requirements, with Cu=0.197%, Mg=1.10%, Mn=1.07%, and Fe=0.315%. The COA also lists certified concentration values for an additional 15 elements, including Be, Bi, Cd, Pb, Sb, Sr, and Ti.

Finally, alloy 5182 (AA5182) is a lightweight and malleable metal that has been in use for centuries. Common applications for this aluminum alloy include automobile applications (body panels and reinforcement members), aluminum can tops, brackets, and packaging products such as containers. Its composition includes magnesium and manganese as minor elements, ranging from 4-5% Mg and 0.2-0.5% Mn. Our new MBH-AL5182-20 CRM hits the mark with Mg=4.01% and Mn=0.39%. This COA also lists many trace elements, with a total of 19 total certified concentrations, for the alloying elements as well as trace elements such as Be, Bi, Cd, and Sb to name a few.


Written by: Kim Halkiotis, Posted by LGC Industrial (www.armi.com)

Elemental analysis : The cure-all solution to more efficient base metal mining

Have you met Doctor Copper? With a Ph.D. in economics, he’s famous for his ability to predict the health of the global economy! If this sounds too good to be true, that’s because Doctor Copper isn’t really a person – he’s a concept. The idea is that, because copper is so fundamental to a range of global industries, its price indicates overall economic well-being.

Copper, zinc, nickel, and lead are the base metals that build our world. While they don’t quite have the glamour of precious metals, like gold, silver, and platinum, base metals underpin our global economy. They’re utilized in a range of industries, including telecommunications, transport, and construction. With such a fundamental role in our day-to-day lives and the health of our markets, we must mine these metals in the most time-, cost-, and energy-efficient way possible.

The growing need for cleaner, greener mining

In recent years, there has been increasing global attention on the environmental impact of mining. Many mining companies are on ongoing missions to improve their operational efficiencies. A key focus of these efforts is elemental analysis, which allows operators to better match their use of resources, such as water, energy, and chemicals, to the ores they process.

In many stages during mining processing, such as electrowinning, conventional elemental analysis remains time-consuming, inefficient, and costly. Why? Because most sites still rely on liquid analysis with titration. Measured every four hours, this analysis generates limited, user-dependent data points that make process control inefficient. The infrequency of the monitoring also means that the electrolysis bath lacks stability. And all this means lost time, energy, and money.

Meeting the demand for more efficient elemental analysis

But we have the solution! The Epsilon XFlow is an online analyzer that provides insights into hydrometallurgy, leaching, electroplating, and wastewater processes. Using energy-dispersive X-ray fluorescence (ED-XRF) technology, this system produces continuous, real-time elemental analysis in liquid processes. In this way, it lets you change process conditions immediately to ensure efficient production and optimum product quality.

And that’s not all. Thanks to the latest flowcell technology, Epsilon XFlow can also produce highly repeatable results, both short- and long-term. This means that accuracy levels remain high, even when carrying out fast, simultaneous multi-element analysis. Plus, the system has a proven user interface for easy operation and maintenance, remote service and support options, and is chemically resistant to a wide range of liquids. This is essential when using the kinds of high-acidity liquids needed in base metal extraction processes.

Industry-leading solutions for elemental analysis

The Epsilon XFlow is a complete solution for making liquid analysis in mining safer, faster, and more cost-efficient. But we don’t stop there. At Malvern Panalytical, we offer a range of other analytical solutions for base metals mining, including our ASD QualitySpec 7000 Process Spectrometer. This system is designed for the continuous measurement of solids, powders, and blended materials – with the potential to save mining companies hundreds of thousands of dollars. Malvern Panalytical is helping to lead the way to a cleaner and more sustainable future for base metal production. And with solutions so smart, not even Doctor Copper could have thought of them!


Written by: Uwe Konig , Posted by: Malvern Panalytical (www.materials-talks.com)