Heat Treating Large Aluminum Trusses For Mooring Weather Balloons

Metlab has heat treated a series of aluminum trusses used to tether aerostat balloons. The trusses, fabricated from 6061 Aluminum were placed in a rigid fixture with a 13′ x 6′ wide foot-print, 12′ tall, developed to hold three trusses per heat treat cycle. Each truss was over 12′ long. Parts were hardened by solution treating at 985°F, held for one hour, and then water quenched. They were then hand straightened over the complete span, and age hardened to the T-6 condition (350°F/10 hours). The pit furnace utilized for the thermal treatment measures 15′ in diameter by 12′ deep, and has a retort to allow for processing parts under inert atmospheres. The heat treated trusses comprise a section of the entire mooring assembly, which is over 24′ long, used to anchor the balloons.

Metlab, based inWyndmoor,PA is a specialized commercial heat-treating facility serving a domestic and international customer base. The company’s broad range of precision thermal processing capabilities include normalizing, hardening and tempering atmosphere annealing, stress relieving, age hardening, carburizing, nitriding, and boronizing, particularly very large parts to very deep case depths. The company also provides metallurgical consulting services. Parts processed range from those a few ounces in weight to pieces up to15 feet in diameter by 24 feet long. With a fleet of vans and trucks, Metlab offers a pick-up and delivery service to customers in the region.

Metlab provides thermal processes in accordance with most military specifications, and is an approved supplier of heat-treating, black oxide, and coating services to many of the major manufacturers and Fortune 500 companies.

This entry was posted in Heat Treating and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

* Copy This Password *

* Type Or Paste Password Here *