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Contribution of a New Generation Field-Emission Scanning Electron Microscope in the Understanding of a 2099 Al-Li Alloy

  • Nicolas Brodusch (a1), Michel Trudeau (a2), Pierre Michaud (a1), Lisa Rodrigue (a2), Julien Boselli (a3) and Raynald Gauvin (a1)...

Abstract

Aluminum-lithium alloys are widespread in the aerospace industry. The new 2099 and 2199 alloys provide improved properties, but their microstructure and texture are not well known. This article describes how state-of-the-art field-emission scanning electron microscopy (FE-SEM) can contribute to the characterization of the 2099 aluminum-lithium alloy and metallic alloys in general. Investigations were carried out on bulk and thinned samples. Backscattered electron imaging at 3 kV and scanning transmission electron microscope imaging at 30 kV along with highly efficient microanalysis permitted correlation of experimental and expected structures. Although our results confirm previous studies, this work points out possible substitutions of Mg and Zn with Li, Al, and Cu in the T1 precipitates. Zinc and magnesium are also present in “rice grain”–shaped precipitates at the grain boundaries. The versatility of the FE-SEM is highlighted as it provides information in the macro- and microscales with relevant details. Its ability to probe the distribution of precipitates from nano- to microsizes throughout the matrix makes FE-SEM an essential technique for the characterization of metallic alloys.

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* Corresponding author. E-mail: nicolas.brodusch@mcgill.ca

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Keywords

Contribution of a New Generation Field-Emission Scanning Electron Microscope in the Understanding of a 2099 Al-Li Alloy

  • Nicolas Brodusch (a1), Michel Trudeau (a2), Pierre Michaud (a1), Lisa Rodrigue (a2), Julien Boselli (a3) and Raynald Gauvin (a1)...

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