Cracking of Aluminum Alloy Rivets Used in Space Application: A Metallurgical Investigation
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High strength AA 2024 aluminum alloys are used for riveting applications in the Indian space program. Due to rapid aging kinetics of this alloy the riveting operation must be completed within 30 min of the solution treatment. A new alloy, equivalent to Russian V65 aluminum alloy, emerged as being more suitable alloy for the rivet application because the natural aging process is significantly slower. This new alloy contains less magnesium than the AA 2024 alloy and the lower magnesium content decreases the aging kinetics because of the decreased vacancy concentration in the as-quenched alloy. However, recently, during riveting operations, few of the riveted heads showed cracks on the free bulged surface of head. The cracked heads of rivets were analyzed to understand the cause of cracking and this article highlights the details of the analysis.
KeywordsRivet failure Failure analysis Spiral cracks
The authors are indebted to Shri P.S. Veeraraghavan, Director, VSSC for permission to publish this work.
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