When it comes to producing light alloy castings that feature strength and resistance to corrosion, manufacturers across the globe rely on two types of metals – steel and aluminum. A wide range of grades and alloys are available for these top materials of choice. If you want to take a closer look at these two contenders, check out the advantages and disadvantages of each metal.
Differences Between Aluminum and Steel Alloys
Steel is Stronger than Aluminum
Although steel is the stronger metal, other aluminum alloys feature more strength than some varieties of steel. When engineered carefully, aluminum can be used for specific applications that need strength for operation. However, steel would still be your best bet if your project requires weight-bearing structural elements.
Aluminum Offers the Weight Advantage
Most aluminum alloys are about 2.5 – 3 times less dense than steel. This implies that in terms of weight advantage, aluminum wins. When aluminum is increased in a product’s vital areas, the material can offer enhanced stiffness and strength without compromising its lighter weight.
Steel is More Resistant to Heat Than Aluminum
Compared to steel, aluminum products are less resistant to heat because their melting temperature is much lower. In fact, as soon as aluminum is subjected to 900 degrees F, it starts to soften. On the other hand, steel stays intact unless subjected to a temperature above 2500 degrees F. For high-heat applications, steel is the better choice.
Aluminum Offers Advantage for Machining
Steel’s innate strength and durability is often a drawback for machining. This means that compared to aluminum, more time is needed, and more expensive tools are required to obtain the product’s required shape.
Do You Have Questions About Alloy Castings?
A wide array of factors needs to be considered before you can decide on the material that best suits your needs. If you need more information about alloy castings, it’s best to consult the experts at Ferralloy, Inc. We are the leading global supplier of quality castings. Call us now!