Turbocharger casing in automotive engine systems
Higher engine efficiency, better performance and faster turbocharger are no longer desirable characteristics associated to just racing cars. In recent years, more and more high-end car manufacturers also aim to achieve these features as they are becoming more desirable and important to regular car users. Turbochargers, found in these diesel and petrol engine cars, help boost the engine horsepower to gain the advantage of increased speed and higher efficiencies.
Historically, the turbocharger casings have been made from casting due to their complex final net shape. However, the use of wrought products in thin sheet is being increasingly embraced as the casing can now be fabricated to the final net shape too. As compared to casting, fabricating the turbochargers from wrought sheets give the advantage of reduced weight, defect free components, reduced material used, lower cost and increased efficiency.
One particular class of alloys used are the austenitic stainless steels. Alloys such as RA330®, 253 MA®, and Alloy 310 are increasingly being sought after for this application. Due to the success of RA330® in thermal process and flare tip applications, automotive materials engineers are beginning to see the advantages of wrought products in the turbocharger application. RA330®, in particular, is attractive mainly because of its thermal fatigue resistance, oxidation resistance up to 1150°C and metallurgical immunity to sigma phase embrittlement.
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