Problem Solving


Performed differential scanning calorimeter (DSC) analysis of alloys to determine the critical temperatures for new heat treat practices.

Touchstone has extensive capabilities in Aluminum Alloy Research and Development. The following examples illustrate some of our contributions to this business sector:

  • Development of new brazing alloys: This includes alloy design; casting and rolling of new or modified brazing alloys into sheet to evaluate formability; and determination of tensile properties, fatigue life, corrosion resistance, and brazeability as related to core erosion and braze flow.
  • Tested the effectiveness of various new grain refining additives.
  • Performed evaluations on heat exchanger joint fillets in various locations including tube-to-header and fin-to-tube locations. This includes photographs of the various joints, image analysis measurements of the fillet areas, and statistical evaluation of the results.
  • Performed field evaluations and laboratory tests of anodized, decorative aluminum products to determine the cause of failure.
  • Melted and cast laboratory-scale ingots using a 40 lb. capacity induction furnace.
  • Performed rolling of various aluminum alloys.
  • Determined the cause of corrosion failures of aluminum products to allow development of preventative systems to extend service life.
  • Aided in the design of various metallurgical experiments to improve both brazing sheet and structural alloys. These include changes in heat treat practice and mechanical processing of the metal.
  • Performed differential scanning calorimeter (DSC) analysis of alloys to determine the critical temperatures for new heat treat practices.
  • Performed corrosion potential measurements of various alloys. This operation included the development of an electrochemical machining system that allows the consistent and accurate removal of aluminum from a surface in 0.5 mil increments.
  • Provided chemical analysis of alloys and unknown gross materials from casting using Inductively Coupled Plasma Spectrometry (ICP).
  • Examined and identified inclusions in can stock and aircraft alloys using SEM and/or electron microprobe to determine source and prevent contamination of future product.
  • Performed accelerated corrosion testing of alloys used for heat exchangers, various decorative and structural materials, and airframe applications.
  • Performed failure mode analyses of various components of aluminum reduction equipment and make design or assembly recommendations to increase production, service life, and/or employee safety. Items include: potline anode rods, pot cradles, siphon tubes, breaker plates, lifting equipment, and crucible failures.
  • Provided experimental heat treating of various alloys to develop more time and cost- effective heat treat practices.
  • Conduct literature searches to aid in the development of new alloy combinations or new applications for existing alloys which enhance revenue without increasing capital expenditures.
  • Aided in the production of technical videotapes for marketing and new product introductions.


The above examples are only a sample of our work in this area. We would be pleased to provide any additional information you may require. We also invite you to review examples on our website of work that we have performed in support of other business sectors.