By Jeremy McAllister
Imagine What’s Possible
At ALLVAR, we are working to better understand what types of precision manufacturing challenges our alloys can tackle. This “unobtanium” material is brand new in the materials space – the last novel thermal expansion alloy discovered was INVAR, over 125 years ago. ALLVAR Alloys’ ability to compensate for the expansion and contraction of other material properties in shifting temperatures exists in uncharted scientific territory. There is an entire world of applications that can benefit from ALLVAR Alloys that have yet to be explored. We partner with machinists and precision manufacturing leaders that strive to be on the cutting edge.
Thermal Challenges in Precision Manufacturing
Precision manufacturing and optical fabrication are two markets where ALLVAR’s negative thermal expansion alloys can undoubtedly help. We consistently hear anecdotes from machinists and optical manufacturers that struggle with thermal errors. They describe cases in which an environmental temperature increase of several degrees Fahrenheit can lead to nanometer or micron shifts in their tool positioning processes. When these thermal errors arise, precision manufacturing production grinds to a halt – the equipment must be adjusted to the correct position, ultimately wasting valuable time and resources in a competitive industry focused on consistent, precise and high-quality results. Other times, these thermal errors lead to nonconformances, scrap, and rework. These many issues are caused by an almost unnoticeable change in temperature, either from heat generated from extended machine use, or an increase in environmental temperature.
Explore Athermalization with ALLVAR
So, we are challenging you, the manufacturing expert, to explore how you could improve your process with a custom-designed negative thermal expansion component. How could the elimination of thermal errors benefit your precision manufacturing processes? The benefits would include:
- Tightening achievable tolerancing and a more consistent product
- Reducing scrap, rework, and nonconformances
- Reducing additional setups throughout the day
- Achieving a constant displacement or force through CTE compensation
- Increasing control of processing variables
If reducing thermal errors could help with your manufacturing processes, reach out to us today! Dr. James A. Monroe will be attending SPIE Optifab, October 19th-21st 2021, and you can setup a meeting with him here. If you are not attending Optifab, or want to talk about how ALLVAR Alloys could benefit your manufacturing process, contact us here.
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