Most copper based alloys achieve their strength from cold work, but that is not the case for copper beryllium alloys. Heat-treating copper beryllium is necessary for giving the alloy its versatility. When being created, the alloy uses a mix of cold work and age hardening. Age hardening is a thermal process. This is a heat treatment process that increases the yield strength of materials that are malleable. Beryllium copper is able to be age hardened because of is mechanical properties, which are not found in other alloys. This means that this alloy can take on intricate shapes when ductile, while being age hardened to its highest strength. This process creates high levels of strength for any copper based alloys.
Age hardening takes the alloy through a few different steps. At first, microscopic, beryllium filled particles are created in a metal matrix. The step can be considered a diffusion-controlled reaction. Depending on the type of alloy, different times and temperatures are required for creating the alloy. The standard time for this process ranges from two to three hours. If the alloy is heated too much its strength will begin to deteriorate.
The strength of heat treatable beryllium copper is unmatched. Once the material is hardened it can be shaped into a final form. For instance, heat treatable beryllium copper wire can be shaped into springs and other complex shapes. If strength is an absolute requirement for your business, you should strongly consider alloys that are age hardened.
There are many different forms of Copper, and each different form is used for a various amount of applications. Beryllium copper is a copper alloy that is composed of beryllium bronze and spring copper.
When looking for a product with many diverse attributes, there is nothing else to consider besides beryllium copper wire.
The application and usage of beryllium copper wire is extensive to say the least. You can find the alloy being used in heavy-duty industrial applications as well as in the home.