Waspaloy is one of the most popular superalloys in the world at the moment. The nickel-based superalloy is especially prominent for its performance in high-temperature situations, although it is also as flexible and as versatile as many other superalloy options out there.
This article looks into all you need to know about Waspaloy, as well as how the material is used across different industries.
Superalloys: The Future Of Manufacturing?
To get the best understanding of Waspaloy, it is important to also understand the class of material that it is – the superalloy.
While the definitions of “superalloy” are pretty broad, a superalloy is essentially a form of metal alloy that is designed to work at high-temperature levels – usually determined by its melting point. Superalloys need many features to get the job done, and most engineers tend to look at factors such as durability, melting point, and oxidation resistance.
The importance of superalloys comes in the fact that they are especially needed in situations where temperature is a huge consideration. To be fair, superalloys aren’t the only materials that can work in high-temperature situations. However, they are the ones best suited for these applications.
Think about it – ceramics handle temperatures quite well, but they aren’t durable. Another option is tungsten – a material that does well with temperature but is also prone to significant oxidation. Every material that works at high-temperature levels will have a flaw or the other. Superalloys provide a proper remedy for this, offering the perfect mix of strength as well as resistance to factors like high temperature, oxidation, corrosion, and even creeping.
In engineering today, temperature remains a significant problem. For most engineering work, there is a significant need to deal with high temperatures. There is already knowledge of how best to make faster and more reliable objects. But, for these to happen, materials need to be able to handle higher temperatures. With superalloys, engineers have a proper solution for this, while also accessing them in large amounts and possibly at economical prices.
Waspaloy: An Overview
Now that we understand what superalloys are, let’s go into the main thing – what is Waspaloy?
Waspaloy is a superalloy that is made primarily out of Nickel. In some cases, you might see it being referred to as “Nickel Waspaloy” – although most people just call it “Waspaloy” to save time and sound more formal.
It is worth noting that Nickel isn’t the only material that is available in Waspaloy. In most variants, you also see significant deposits of materials such as chromium, cobalt, and titanium. This has given rise to the term “Cobalt Waspaloy,” which some engineers call the material due to its relatively high cobalt content. However, with Nickel being the primary content of Waspaloy, the initial alternative moniker holds true the most.
Is Waspaloy a superalloy? Yes, it is. This age-hardenable, Nickel-based material is especially popular for its ability to withstand high temperatures, with functionalities across engineering, manufacturing, and other fields. From jets to turbines, and more, The Nickel alloy Waspaloy is as versatile as they come.
Waspaloy is currently available in different formats – all of which work for different uses and requirements. Some of the most significant options include:
Waspaloy is produced in bar form, which is cylindrical in shape. Waspaloy bars are often used for machining operations to create components with specific dimensions and shapes.
Waspaloy can be manufactured in sheet or plate form, which is flat and thin. Waspaloy sheets are primarily used for applications where thin and broad sections of Waspaloy are required, such as in aerospace components or high-temperature environments.
These are semi-finished forms of Waspaloy that operate across a broader cross-sectional area. In most cases, people use them as starting materials – meaning that they would eventually be subjected to even more processing down the line/ these processing options can be Waspaloy forging, extrusion, and more. At the end of the day, the goal here is to make complex components.
In some cases, Waspaloy can also be made into a wire. These wires are used in areas where temperature resistance, optimal strength, and durability are required. From oil and gas to aerospace and chemical processing, these functionalities are extensive.
Like many other alloys, Waspaloy can also be made into tubes or pipes. These materials help to transport fluids – although they can also be used to meet other specific requirements. The tubes or pipes are especially useful in high-temperature environments, where mechanical and corrosion resistance are prioritized.
Other forms of Waspaloy forgings include rings, discs, and other complex shapes. They provide the same physical properties as the other Waspaloy variants, and they can be used in situations where reliability is key.
It is also important to note that the availability of these items will vary based on the Waspaloy suppliers. So, be sure to ask your supplier which variant of the material is available before making a purchase.
Waspaloy: Manufacturing Process
A lot of newbies would most likely be wondering, “How is Waspaloy made?” Below are the processes:
Melting & Casting
The first step in the Waspaloy manufacturing process is usually melting. In this step, the raw materials – which include Nickel, cobalt, and co – are subjected to heat within the confines of a vacuum induction melting furnace. For this step, it is important for Waspaloy manufacturers to carefully measure the materials and add them to the furnace to ensure that the resulting product is able to meet the right quality and safety standards.
After the melting process, we have cast. Here, the molten alloy is poured into a preheated shape to create the first form. Considering that there are different Waspaloy casting techniques, manufacturers are spoilt for choice when looking to get the desired form. However, the investment casting process is especially favored by most manufacturers as it helps them to create different complex shapes and dimensions.
Once the casting step is done, Waspaloy is made to undergo heat treatment – or, as many call it, forging.
The entire point of the Waspaloy heat treatment step is to create something that is able to optimize the material’s mechanical properties. With steps such as age hardening and solutionizing, this process ensures that Waspaloy is able to live up to its billing and optimize its physical features – strength, deformation resistance, and much more.
Forging & Hot Working
From there, manufacturers also have to go through the forging and hot working process. Waspaloy hot working involves deforing the alloy using either the rolling or Waspaloy forging technique, and all in all, it helps to refine the material’s grain structure.
Like the initial forming process, hot working also helps to improve Waspaloy’s physical properties. And, it is one of the critical components in manufacturing the different formats of Waspaloy – sheets, bars, etc.
Machining & Surfacing
As soon as Waspaloy is done with the forging process, it essentially enters its semi-finished form. It’s almost done, but there is a need for a little bit more process optimization. This is where the machining process comes in.
Waspaloy machining is done to help achieve the right dimensions and shape metrics. It ensures that even though Waspaloy has already been processed, its form and appearance are as optimized as possible.
There are different Waspaloy machining processes that manufacturers can choose from – ranging from drilling and milling to turning and grinding. At the end of the day, manufacturers need to consider the method that best helps them to remove all debris and excess material – while also optimizing precision.
In a bid to improve corrosion resistance and surface properties, many Waspaloy manufacturers also employ the surface treatment method. Ways to achieve this include electroplating, shot peening, and even coating.
As we said, corrosion resistance and property enhancement are the major reasons why this step is employed. Considering the important functions that Waspaloy serves, every form of optimization is needed for the material to be made.
All through the manufacturing process, it is important for manufacturers to maintain the right quality control and inspection processes to ensure that the Waspaloy material is up to code and meets the required specifications.
Manufacturers have different quality control steps to choose from, ranging from ultrasonic testing and mechanical examinations to X-ray inspections and more. All of these are done to assess the Waspaloy material’s quality and mechanical integrity.
Once the necessary tests have been completed, the manufacturers can now complete a final processing step for the Waspaloy material. This can range in operation, from steps like additional heat treatment to precision machining and more.
The goal, like the quality control step, is to ensure that Waspaloy is able to meet the right product characteristics.
Now, while all of this seems like a detailed step, you should note thatWaspaloy manufacturers and Waspaloy suppliers tend to use different variations in steps based on their proprietary working processes and methods. The steps outlined offer a general view of how we manufacture our Waspaloy sheets at Tuolian Metal. We strive to provide the very best in Waspaloy materials, and we are as thorough as possible.
Need any advice or consultation? Please, feel free to contact us!
Waspaloy: Chemical Compositions
When considering the Waspaloy material, it is important to understand what comprises it. This way, you get to understand the many Waspaloy material properties and how it is able to do what it does.
Generally, the Waspaloy chemical composition tends to vary. However, in most situations, you can find the following chemicals in these percentages:
AMS Waspaloy Variants
In general, there are three Aerospace Material Specification (AMS) variants of Waspaloy that manufacturers and engineers work with. These include:
A Nickel alloy Waspaloy variant, AMS 5544 is precipitation-hardening and is mostly used in aerospace manufacturing functionalities. It specifies the requirements for Waspaloy in the form of plate, strip, and sheet, and it also comes with detailed composition limits, heat treatment conditions, and mechanical properties.
Also, a precipitation-hardening variant, AMS 5706 is used primarily in high-temperature applications. It focuses more on Waspaloy forgings, Waspaloy rings, and Waspaloy bars. And as you’d expect, it specifies properties such as quality control requirements and heat treatment procedures.
This Waspaloy variant is primarily used in making turbine engine blades and other manufacturing components that tend to be subjected to particular high-temperature conditions. Detailed properties for things like heat treatment and chemical composition are also critical for this variant.
It’s important to note that these AMS variants provide specific guidelines and standards for the manufacturing and use of Waspaloy in aerospace applications. These standards ensure consistency, quality, and performance of the material in demanding environments.
Now, while these are the major variants that many engineers and Waspaloy suppliers provide, it is worth noting that there are several others to be considered. Some of these include:
- AMS 5704
- AMS 5707
- AMS 5708
- AMS 5709
Waspaloy: Physical Properties
Like many other materials and alloys out there, Waspaloy comes with different discerning physical properties that make it unique. These Waspaloy properties provide a significant profile for Waspaloy, which allow both users and manufacturers to easily recognize it.
Among the many physical properties of Waspaloy, you can especially consider the following:
The Waspaloy hardness tends to vary based on the specific processing conditions that the material is made to go through – meaning that Waspaloy manufacturers have a lot of effects on the hardness metric. Waspaloy has a typically high hardness rating, which helps it to maintain optimal strength. The metric currently stands at 38 to 45 Rockwell C Hardness (HRC) – or 350 to 420 HV on the Vickers Scale.
The Waspaloy density currently stands at about 8.22 grams per cubic centimeter (g/cm³) – of, for those who want to use a different measuring system, 0.297 pounds per cubic inch (lb/in³).
Waspaloy has a relatively high melting point. The metric currently stands at approximately 1350°C (2460°F). And, with such a high melting point, it’s no wonder that the material has such an impressive level of high-temperature performance.
Compared to other metals, Waspaloy actually doesn’t have such a high thermal conductivity. With a rating of between 8 to 10 watts per meter-kelvin (W/(m·K)) at room temperature, Waspaloy doesn’t necessarily conduct so much heat. Still, its ability to withstand high heat levels is what especially makes it stand out.
Coefficient of Thermal Expansion:
Waspaloy has a moderate coefficient of thermal expansion, which is the measure of how much it expands or contracts with changes in temperature. It typically ranges from around 11 to 13.5 × 10^(-6) per degree Celsius (µm/m·°C) or (µin/in·°F) in the temperature range of 20-1000°C (68-1832°F).
Waspaloy exhibits good electrical conductivity, similar to other nickel-based alloys. Its electrical conductivity is typically around 12-17% IACS (International Annealed Copper Standard).
Once again, it is important to consider that these properties tend to vary based on the specific composition of the Waspaloy material. Other factors that can determine its physical properties include heat treatment and the manufacturing processes involved in making the material.
Besides this, many manufacturers and Waspaloy suppliers could provide detailed physical property data for their particular Waspaloy grades. So, please get in touch with us to know our technical specifications and check out our data sheet to know more about our Waspaloy products.
Waspaloy Mechanical Properties
Now that we’re clear on the Waspaloy physical properties, let’s look into the mechanical properties Waspaloy shares as well.
Of all the Waspaloy material properties, its tensile strength is one of its most impressive. Typically, the material ranges between 1050 and 1300 megapascals (MPa) in tensile strength – or, for those who might want to use a different measuring technique, Waspaloy’s tensile strength can also measure between 152,000 to 189,000 pounds per square inch (psi).
Yield strength, which measures the stress at which Waspaloy starts to decorate permanently, is also quite high. Generally, a typical Waspaloy material will hold about 690 to 1150 MPa in yield strength – or 100,000 to 167,000 psi.
Typically, Waspaloy has an elongation of about 15% to 25%. This means that the material is quite good when it comes to conductivity.
Fatigue strength on Waspaloy is also quite strong. It ranges between around 550 to 700 MPa or 80,000 to 101,000 psi, depending on the material’s factors.
Once again, remember that these factors tend to vary based on the material’s grade, heat treatment, and manufacturing processes. So, get in touch with us to find out more about the mechanical properties of our Waspaloy products.
Waspaloy: Uses & Functionalities
With its impressive performance under high temperatures, Waspaloy has been used in various industries. Some of its major functionalities include:
Developing Aerospace Components
When a person asks, “What is Waspaloy used for?”, perhaps the first answer that comes to mind will be its application in the development of aerospace components.
Thanks to its impressive strength-to-weight ratio and resistance to both high temperatures and corrosion, Waspaloy is used in manufacturing several critical components of aviation vehicles – from compressor discs and turbine blades to engine seals and shafts.
Building Gas Turbine Engine Parts
Waspaloy is also used in producing components for gas turbine engines – another function that takes its resistance to high temperatures and corrosion into consideration. The material is used in turbine sections, applied in developing exhaust nozzles, and used to make other parts that need to resist any thermal fatigue.
Industrial Gas Turbines
For industrial gas turbines, Waspaloy is used to optimize power generation. Just as well, it plays a role in industrial applications, being used in constructing components such as turbine rotors and combustion chambers.
All of these components work under a significant amount of mechanical stress, and Waspaloy is a great material to apply in developing them.
Fastener Component Development
Waspaloy is also used to produce high-temperature fasteners – such as nuts, bolts, and screws. In turn, these fasteners can be used across different industries, lending the same qualities of temperature and corrosion resistance.
With its physical properties, Waspaloy is also an ideal material for producing high-performance springs that can be used across multiple critical applications. The springs will be able to work in high temperatures, while also withstanding any cyclic loading conditions.
In the nuclear industry, Waspaloy is also used to develop components such as reactor internals, control rod drive mechanism, and fuel-handling systems. Engineers welding Waspaloy will be able to enjoy its physical properties – important, considering that nuclear applications tend to require a significant amount of heat resistance.
Measuring Waspaloy Against Other Superalloys
While Waspaloy appears to be the shining superalloy, it is worth noting that it isn’t the only option. At the moment, engineers and manufacturers are spoilt for choice when selecting these materials.
So, how does Waspaloy stack up against other members of the superalloy group?
Waspaloy vs. Inconel: What Are The Differences?
If there is any superalloy that shows significant similarities with Waspaloy, it would be Inconel. First formulated in 1932, the material is also a Nickel-based superalloy that shows significant temperature resistance as well as an ability to withstand corrosion and oxidation.
Nevertheless, the first major line of distinction in the Waspaloy vs Inconel debate is the chemical composition of the materials. Both are Nickel-based superalloys, but while Waspaloy sees Nickel mixed with chromium, cobalt, and molybdenum as its major materials, Inconel mixes Nickel with chromium, molybdenum, and iron.
Moving on, you should also note that both materials have significantly varying melting points. The metric for Waspaloy stands at 1375°C (2510°F), while Inconel melts at 1413°C (2575°F). This difference means that engineers and manufacturers would need to heat Waspaloy more quickly in order for it to hit its melting point.
Besides this, Waspaloy also comes with a higher tensile strength than Inconel. However, with Inconel being able to withstand higher temperatures than Waspaloy, engineers definitely have a lot to consider when choosing between both materials. Instead of looking for what is better than Inconel, carefully considering the differences between both materials is the best way to ensure that you’re making the right decision.
How Does Waspaloy Measure Against Hastelloy?
Hastelloy is another Nickel-based superalloy that gets compared with Waspaloy a lot. It’s understandable, of course – both have similar material compositions, and their functionalities are quite similar as well.
Still, the Waspaloy vs Hasteloy debate has a lot of nuances as well.
For one, both materials differ slightly in their composition. As we’ve said, Waspaloy contains Nickel, as well as chromium molybdenum, and cobalt primarily. Nickel holds about 60% of its entire composition, while manufacturers generally have the freedom to pick whichever other materials they’d like to choose and the component percentages.
Hastelloy does as well, but it comes at a higher content of chromium and molybdenum – about 22% and 14% respectively – than Waspaloy.
With a higher chromium content, Hastelloy is also able to achieve a higher melting point than Waspaloy – and, it resists heat even better.
Some of the other differences between them include:
- Overall Strength: Generally, Waspaloy is stronger than Hastelloy. It has higher tensile and yield strength ratings, with its mechanical strength also making it more suitable for high-stress applications.
- Corrosion Resistance: Just like heat, Hastelloy also resists corrosion better than Waspaloy. This makes it more suitable for a broader range of environments, whether alkaline or acidic.
- Temperature Resistance: Both materials actually do quite well when it comes to temperature resistance. However, Waspaloy takes the edge slightly here.
Waspaloy is one of the most popular superalloys, and it’s pretty easy to see why. With its optimal physical properties, this alloy is able to operate across multiple fields, powering manufacturing operations across the board.
Want to get your hands on this material? Tuolian Metal provides an easy way of accessing it. We offer the best quality Waspaloy materials at affordable prices, and you can even get additional consultation services as well. Get in touch with us, and let’s help you out!
Frequently Asked Questions
How much is Waspaloy?
The Waspaloy price tends to vary based on several factors – including the format you’re getting, as well as the dimensions. Most suppliers and manufacturers use the format to determine the cost, meaning that the Waspaloy bar price might not necessarily be the same as that of a Waspaloy sheet.
Besides that, you also need to consider the dimensions. Waspaloy bars are usually measured in kilograms, while sheets are measured in thickness. When you consider the fact that there are other formats (billets, wires, etc.), you’d find that it would be much better to get an estimate from your supplier.
How do I get my hands on Waspaloy?
Waspaloy suppliers are the best bet for anyone looking to get their hands on this material. It is important for you to find a supplier that is reliable and effective, and which can explain the different nuances of Waspaloy to you. This way, your purchase experience can be smoother and more seamless across the board.
You also need to consider the format of the Waspaloy you’re purchasing. This will let you know whether to look for Waspaloy bar factories or suppliers who focus more on, say, sheets or billets.
How does Waspaloy compare to other superalloys?
Waspaloy is one of the most popular superalloys. And, it owes most of its popularity to its impressive corrosion resistance and strength – as well as its ability to withstand high temperatures. Generally, when comparing Waspaloy to other superalloys, you’d find that it does especially well in the strength and temperature resistance areas.
How do I know if Waspaloy is good for me?
Waspaloy’s main selling points are its strength, high-temperature performance, and resistance to both corrosion and oxidation. These reasons are why the material is especially great for different manufacturing and engineering projects.
So, if you know that these features are required, feel free to go ahead and purchase them. However, it is also important to get a recommendation from a qualified supplier or manufacturer to guide your purchase decisions.
Is Waspaloy magnetic?
Waspaloy is not a magnetic material. Despite the fact that its chief constituent material, Nickel, is magnetic, Waspaloy itself doesn’t demonstrate any magnetic functionalities.