Available Technology

NASA-427: A New Aluminum Alloy

With Improved Impact Toughness and Mechanical Properties
The NASA-427 alloy, with its origins in the Ares rocket program, has high potential for use in a number of automotive applications, including cast aluminum wheels, control arms, steering knuckles, and other components. Why its Better This technology uses precise chemistry to improve the mechanical properties of cast aluminum products, which demonstrate substantial increases in impact toughness due to the improvement in tensile strength and ductility. The steps necessary to complete the thermal coating process proceed more quickly using this new alloy the heat treatment process is much shorter, and the aging process has been optimized in conjunction with the powder or paint-baked coating process. It also offers improved corrosion resistance meeting or exceeding the performance of A356-T6 alloy, as well as offering significant cost-savings over forging 6016-T6 alloy when elongation is less than seven percent. Because of its superior tensile strength coupled with significant process improvements, choosing NASA- 427 yields energy and cost savings for both the manufacturer of cast aluminum components and the end-user.
Patent Abstract: 
NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center researchers have developed a new, stronger aluminum alloy, ideal for cast aluminum products that have powder or paint-baked thermal coatings. With advanced mechanical properties, the NASA-427 alloy shows greater tensile strength and increased ductility, providing substantial improvement in impact toughness. In addition, this alloy improves the thermal coating process by decreasing the time required for heat treatment. With improvements in both strength and processing time, use of the alloy provides reduced materials and production costs, lower product weight, and better product performance. The superior properties of NASA-427 can benefit many industries, including automotive, where it is particularly well-suited for use in aluminum wheels.
Benefits 

Strength: Improvements in tensile strength and ductility result in high impact toughness

applications 

Aluminum wheels

Control arms

Steering knuckles

Brake calipers

Automotive cross members

Differential carriers

Reps: 
Patent Number: 
9,284,636
Internal Laboratory Ref #: 
MFS-TOPS-8
Patent Status: 
Patent Issue Date: 
May 26, 2015
Agency
NASA
Region
Southeast
State: 
Alabama
Phone: 
256-544-9151
Email: 
terry.taylor@nasa.gov
Lab Representatives
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