Differential Scanning Calorimetry and Thermodynamic Predictions: A Comparative Study of Al-Zn-Mg-Cu Alloys

Gernot Kolb, Stefanie Scheiber, Helmut Antrekowitsch, Peter Uggowitzer, Daniel Pöschmann, Stefan Pogatscher

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6 Citations (Scopus)


Al-Zn-Mg-Cu alloys are widely used in aircraft applications because of their superior mechanical properties and strength/weight ratios. Commercial Al-Zn-Mg-Cu alloys have been intensively studied over the last few decades. However, well-considered thermodynamic calculations, via the CALPHAD approach, on a variation of alloying elements can guide the fine-tuning of known alloy systems and the development of optimized heat treatments. In this study, a comparison was made of the solidus temperatures of different Al-Zn-Mg-Cu alloys determined from thermodynamic predictions and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) measurements. A variation of the main alloying elements Zn, Mg, and Cu generated 38 experimentally produced alloys. An experimental determination of the solidus temperature via DSC was carried out according to a user-defined method, because the broad melting interval present in Al-Zn-Mg-Cu alloys does not allow the use of the classical onset method for pure substances. The software algorithms implemented in FactSage®, Pandat™, and MatCalc with corresponding commercially available databases were deployed for thermodynamic predictions. Based on these investigations, the predictive power of the commercially available CALPHAD databases and software packages was critically reviewed.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages11
JournalMetals : open access journal
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 3 Aug 2016

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