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 Prof C M F Rae

The term 'superalloy' applies to metal alloys which perform well at high temperatures in structural applications. In this course we use a rather more specific definition meaning alloys with a major component of nickel, and containing sufficient alloying additions of Al to produce ordered precipitate phases at the intended working temperatures. Modern alloys contain over 10 different elements, but the presence of aluminium is critical, because it is the only element able to produce effective ordered precipitates and a protective oxide.

This course looks at the structure and properties of high temperature nickel based superalloys, and relates these to the stringent and multiple demands of critical applications; specifically turbine discs and blades. This includes not only the composition of the alloys and the role of the individual elements, but also the vital role of microstructure and the processing necessary to produce this. In the process of examining superalloys we will also look at strengthening mechanisms in general, the role of grain boundaries and various modelling approaches with wider applications in metallic systems. We will extend these principles to some of the areas of current research for improved materials solutions.

This lecture course will cover:

  • Development of superalloys, uses and properties
  • Alloy composition and microstructure
  • Origins of strength
  • Processing Single Crystals
  • Single crystal alloys Design
  • Creep of Single Crystal Alloys
  • Processing of Disc Alloys
  • Disc alloy Design
  • Disc Geometry and Stress Distribution