Aluminum is an essential material in all types of applications from the vehicles driven on highways to aerospace systems and even in production and manufacturing facilities. Different alloys of aluminum have different properties, which can make them easier or more difficult to work with, in all types of applications.
When it comes to joining aluminum, either to another aluminum alloy or to a completely different type of material, such as copper, the different physical properties can make this a challenge. However, through the use of brazing, these types of challenges can be eliminated.
While brazing aluminum uses heat, it is not the same high temperatures that are used in welding. The temperature required is specific to the brazing filler metal, and this is carefully selected to be below the melting point of the aluminum and the other metal or alloy.
The liquid brazing filler metal is drawn up in the small spaces between the two components through capillary action. At the same time, the surfaces of the metal components are heated to allow a solid fusion of the brazing metal liquid and the surfaces.
In many cases, the choice of brazing aluminum with the correct option in brazing filler metal results in a joint that is stronger and more durable than either of the metals or alloys used in the two parts.
One of the most important benefits of brazing aluminum rather than using other types of joining methods is the strength and durability of the joint. In general, once a joint has been brazed, it is permanently joined and cannot be pulled apart or disconnected.
With the ability to quickly apply the heat and then allow a normal, slow cooling process, there is limited need for additional processes relieve stress in the joint assembly. This can assist in reducing the cost per part as well as increase production rates.