Different types of aluminum grades. What’s the difference between each aluminum alloy number?
There are more than 1000 registered aluminum alloy grades in the world. Each grade has various states which have obvious differences in hardness, strength, corrosion resistance, workability, weldability, and decorative properties. When choosing the grade and state of aluminum alloy, it is difficult to meet all the above aspects at the same time.
In fact, it is not necessary to do so. In order to achieve a reasonable selection of materials and control the cost reasonably, we should set the priority of various properties according to the performance requirements of the products, the use environment, the processing process, and other factors.
Aluminum Grades Overview
Aluminum alloys can be divided into 8 different Series according to their chemical composition. and the most commonly used aluminum alloy series are as follows.
Main Grades are: 1050, 1060, 1100, 1200,1145, 1350
This series aluminum plate has over 99% pure aluminum content. It is the most widely used aluminum grade. The main applications are chemical equipment, inland marine equipment, various containers (wine tanks, pressure tanks, tea stoves, etc.), conductive materials, chemical equipment, instruments, signs (equipment signs, highway signs, motor vehicle license plates, etc.), architectural decorative materials, aluminum cookware, aluminum cooking utensil, machine parts that are not under great stress.
2000 Series Aluminum Grade:
Main Grades are: 2A12 (LY12), 2A16 (LY16), 2A06 (LY6)
2 Series aluminum-copper alloy with copper as the main alloying element (Al-Cu alloy). The copper element content is the highest, about 3-5%. Can be quenched or heat-treated to strengthen, high strength, commonly known as hard aluminum (typical representative 2A12); good heat resistance, good machinability, good cutting performance; poor corrosion resistance easy to be corroded (high CU content). Uses aircraft, aerospace, weapons, engines, pistons, automobile bodies, mechanical parts, etc.
3000 Series Aluminum Grade:
The main Grades are: 3003、3004、 3A21
3 Series aluminum-manganese alloys are known as a rust-proof aluminum plate. It is an aluminum alloy with Mn as the main alloying element, which cannot be strengthened by heat treatment. It is a medium-strength aluminum alloy with good plasticity, good welding performance, and slightly stronger corrosion resistance than 1 series. Use: Mainly used for work with slightly higher strength requirement than 1 series aluminum, pressure tank, storage tank, insulation material, mechanical parts, automobile, and aircraft fuel tank, etc.
Main Grades are: 5052, 5005, 5083, 5754, 5A05, 5A06, 5454
5000 Series Aluminum alloy with Mg as the main alloying element. The content of magnesium is between 3-5%. Also can be called an aluminum-magnesium alloy. Not heat treated and strengthened. Low density (5052 density is 2.68). The weight of aluminum-magnesium alloy is lower than other series in the same area. The strength is higher than the 1 and 3 series, and it is a medium to high strength aluminum alloy with good fatigue and welding performance. High tensile strength and high elongation. Good resistance to marine atmospheric corrosion. It belongs to the hot-rolled aluminum sheet series. So it can do deep processing of oxidation.
Main uses: various automobile parts, sheet metal parts; mechanical parts, automobile, aircraft fuel tanks, warships, submarines; containers, etc. 5083 is used for ships, automobiles, aircraft welding parts.
Main Grades are: 6061, 6063, 6082
Aluminum alloy with magnesium and silicon as the main alloying elements, can be heat treated and strengthened (T4, T6, T651), medium strength. High corrosion resistance, good weldability, good formability, and processability. Mechanical parts requiring certain strength, high weldability, and corrosion resistance; various pipes and bars, profiles and decorative components; heat sinks, etc. The hardness is over 95HB.
7000 Series Aluminum Grade:
Main Grades are: 7075, 7050
It is an aluminum alloy with zinc as the main alloying element, which can be strengthened by heat treatment. 7075 aluminum sheet release the internal stress and will not be deformed or warped after cutting or processing. All super large and thick 7075 aluminum plate all by ultrasonic detection, can ensure that no sand eyes, impurities. Uses: Widely used in many parts of the aircraft (mainly for external parts); other high strength, corrosion resistance of high hardness components; a variety of molds (requiring precision). The aluminum 7075 T6 hardness is over 150HB.
Aluminum Grades & Aluminum Properties:
Chemistry Composition & Mechanical Properties
Commonly used Aluminum Grades (aluminum alloy number) and their differences:
As we all know, there are over 1000 different aluminum alloy numbers. But not all grades are commonly used. Here we will introduce some of the most popular alloy number and their properties for you.
As a conductive material, aluminum 1050 is guaranteed to be 61% IACS and 6061 wire is used when strength is required. The aluminum content of 99.5% pure aluminum, general-purpose aluminum, anodized with a slightly white appearance as described above. General ware, heat sink, bottle caps, printing plates, building materials, heat exchanger components.
2014 & 2024 Aluminum:
Contains a large amount of Cu, not good corrosion resistance, but high strength can be used as a construction material, forging products can also be applied, aircraft, gears, oil, pressure components, axles.
Strength is about 10% higher than alloy 1100. It has good formability, weldability, and corrosion resistance. General ware, heat sink, make-up board, photocopier rollers, and marine materials
5052 is the most representative alloy of medium strength, with good corrosion resistance, solubility, and formability, especially high fatigue strength and good resistance to seawater. General sheet metal, ships, vehicles, construction, bottle caps, honeycomb panels. Aluminum sheet 5052 H32 can guarantee 90 degrees bending without crack.
5083 Alloy for weld construction. It is the strongest corrosion-resistant alloy among practical non-heat-treatable alloys and is suitable for dissolution bonding structures. Good seawater resistance and low-temperature characteristics for ships, vehicles, cryogenic vessels, and pressure vessels.
Alloy 5086 has higher strength than 5154 and is a non-heat treatment alloy with good resistance to seawater for solution joint construction. The strength of 5N01 is the same as 3003 for ships, pressure vessels, and magnetic discs. Good formability and corrosion resistance. Kitchen appliances, cameras, decorative items, aluminum plates 5N02 Alloy for hinges, good resistance to seawater hinges
5454 is approximately 20% stronger than 5052 and has approximately the same characteristics as 5154, but has better corrosion resistance than 5154 in severe environments. Wheels for automobiles. Alloy 5454 H32 & 5454 O is wild used for the building tanks.
6061 is a heat-treated corrosion-resistant alloy. It is used for screws, hinges, ships, vehicles, and land structures. 6N01 is a medium-strength extrusion alloy with an intermediate strength of 6061 and 6063. Vehicles, land structures, ships
6063 is a representative alloy for extrusion, with lower strength than 6061, good extrudability, and can be used for complex cross-sectional shapes, good corrosion resistance, and surface treatment.
7075 aluminum alloy has one of the highest strength alloys, and the hardness of this aluminum alloy can reach 150HB or more. It is widely used in vehicles, aircraft parts, precision molds, and shoe molds.
Commonly used Aluminum Grades and their Hardness (HB)
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I believe that this article will give you more understanding of aluminum grade. But if you still can’t decide which aluminum grade you should use, you can ask your technicians. Those questions will be helpful to you: what’s the application of aluminum? Do you need to bend the aluminum bend without crack?
Surely the best way is you can provide us a sample and our factory can test the samples and find out the chemical component. We can find the right grade you need easily.