Metals and Manufacturing Material Definitions and Terms

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Metals and Materials Table of Contents

Terms and definitions related to enginereing materials and metals.

Alloying Elements

Chemical elements added for improving the properties of the finished materials. Some alloying elements are: nickel, chromium, manganese, molydenum, vanadium, silicon, copper.

Annealing

The process of putting material in its softest condition for further processing. This is normally done by heating material to a certain temperature, then cooling it under controlled conditions.

Brinell Hardness

A measurement of a metals hardness (or the ability to resist penetration). A ball is pressed into a sample under a 3000 kilogram load. The diameter of the depression is measured, and the hardness is the ratio of the load to the spherical area of the impression.

Camber

A bend in a plate or sheet which results because on edge or side is longer than the other. Camber in flat products is often caused by rolls which are closer together at one end than at the other, or by uneven temperatures in the slab. In rails and structural shapes, the camber is the "up os down" curvature, a distinguished from the sideways curvature or sweep.

Case-Hardening

A process of hardening a ferrous alloy so that the surface layer or case is made substantially harder than the interior or core. Typical case-hardening processes are curburizing and quenching, cyaniding, carbonitriding, induction hardening and flame hardening.

Cold Rolling (Cold Finishing)

A forming process in which metal is rolled or drawn through dies, usually at room temperature. This produces a product with certain advantages over hot rolled steel, such as tighter tolerances, increased properties, improved finish and straightness.

Ductility

The property that permits permanent deformation before fracture by stress tension.

Elongation

The change in length of a tensile specimen expressed as a percent of the varying loads.

Fatigue Resistance

The ability of a metal to withstand repeated and varying loads.

Finish

In the steel, aluminum industry, refers to the type of surface condition desired or existing in the finished product. For cut plates, finish refers to the quality of an edge or surface required for the part to be acceptable.

Forging

A hot working operation generally involving plastic deformation of metal into desired shapes with compressive force.

Free Machining (Improved machining)

A term to describe a type of steel that has been modified, usually by adding sulfur, lead, or selenium to increase its machinability.

Galvanizing

The process of applying a coating of zinc to cold-reduced sheet, bar, structural, or to fabricated parts made from steel. The coating is applied by hot dipping or electrolytic deposition and is applied to make product more corrosive resistant.

Hardness

The ability of a metal to resist penetration, defined in terms of the measurement 9Brinell, Rockwell, etc.)

Hardenability

The ability of a steel to harden deeply upon quenching.

Heat Treatment

Any process involving heating metal to an elevated temperature to obtain change in properties or metallurgical structure.

Hot Rolled

Hot rolled products are those products that are rolled to finish at temperatures above the recrystallation temperature.

Pickle

Chemical or electrochemical removal of surface oxides (surface scale). Pickled steels must be oiled or they will rust rapidly.

Quenching

A process of rapid cooling from an elevated temperature by contact with liquids, gases or solids.

Rockwell Hardness

A method of measuring the hardness of materials (resistance to penetration). Rockwell measures the hardness by pressing an indentor into the surface of the steel with a specific load, then measuring how far the indentor was able to penetrate. There are a number of Rockwell tests the most common is Rockwell B.

Scale

An oxide of iron which forms on he surface of hot rolled material.

Stress Relieving

A process of reducing residual stresses in material by heating to a suitable temperature and holding for a suffient time. this treatment may be applied to relieve stresses inducted by casting, quenching, normalizing, machining, cold working or welding.

Temper

A condition produced in a metal or alloy by mechanical or thermal treatment and having characteristic structure and mechanical properties.

Work Hardening

Increase in resistance to deformation (hardness) produced by cold working.

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