University of Surrey - Guildford

Registry > Module Catalogue
View Module List by A.O.U. and Level  Alphabetical Module Code List  Alphabetical Module Title List  Alphabetical Old Short Name List  View Menu 
2010/1 Module Catalogue
 Module Code: ENG3086 Module Title: AEROSPACE MATERIALS
Module Provider: Mechanical, Medical & Aero Engineering Short Name: SE3335
Level: HE3 Module Co-ordinator: WHITING MJ Dr (M, M & A Eng)
Number of credits: 10 Number of ECTS credits: 5
Module Availability
Spring Semester
Assessment Pattern

Unit(s) of Assessment




Weighting Towards Module Mark( %)


Assignment Work











2 hours unseen examination











Qualifying Condition(s) 




A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module.







Module Overview

The module examines the most important commercial aerospace alloy: steels, aluminium, titanium and nickel. The applications for these materials are explored throughout in terms of the operating temperature and mechanical property requirements. The manufacture and processing of these materials is explored throughout.





The first 4 of 10 sessions explore matters that are fundamental to the exploitation and processing of any engineering alloys. Session 5 considers the relationship of these fundamental aspects to how aerospace alloys achieve their required properties (with an emphasis on strength – both ambient and creep). Four alloy groups are explored with an emphasis on steels for landing gear applications, aluminium for airframes, titanium for ambient and elevated temperature uses and nickel for jet engine applications. Joining of aerospace materials is explored with a focus on adhesive bonding.





Completion of the progress requirements of Level HE2.





Module Aims

To provide students with:



·       An understanding of the relationship between processing, microstructure and properties for alloys.


·       A general appreciation of how the general aspects of processing, microstructure and properties applies to landing gear steels, airframe aluminium alloys, jet engine nickel alloys and titanium alloys used in both structural and engine applications.


·       An appreciation of the challenges of joining aerospace materials with particular reference to adhesive bonding of lightweight airframe materials.


Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the module, you will be able to:


a)       Recognise the interplay between processing, microstructure properties in aerospace alloys.


b)      Understand the reasons why aerospace alloys have specific applications dependent on the property balance.


c)      Apply basic materials knowledge to analyse the role of alloying additions and infer the relationship of an alloy to others in its class.


d)      Make critical judgements about when further information is needed (and what type) when working with processing and use of engineering alloys.


Module Content

Session 1


Fundamentals I: Processing by heat treatment, Introduction to phase transformations, interfaces, nucleation and growth (Avrami), precipitation in aluminium alloys, PFZs.



Session 2


Fundamentals II: Age hardenable systems, Processing of precipitation strengthened alloys, ferrite precipitation, phase diagrams.



Session 3


Fundamentals III: Phase diagrams continued, introduction to Fe-Fe3C as an example alloy system.



Session 4


Fundamentals IV: Displacive transformations, TTT and CCT diagrams, processing of aerospace steels.



Session 5


Strengthening Mechanisms.



Session 6


Aerospace Steels: Tempering, hardenability, martensitic stainless steels, maraging steels.



Session 7


Nickel Alloys: Development of alloys, Nimonic 75TM, PK 33 TM, Udimet 720 TM and their processing requirements.



Session 8


Aluminium Alloys: Importance of age hardening, 2000 series alloys, 7000 series alloys, Al-Li alloys.



Session 9


Titanium Alloys: Alloying of Ti, alpha alloys, alpha/beta alloys, beta alloy, joining Ti.



Session 10


Adhesive Bonding of aerospace materials.



Session 11


Review of the material.



Methods of Teaching/Learning

20 hrs lectures, 10 hrs tutorials, and 70 hrs independent learning time.



Total student learning time 100 hours.




Selected Texts/Journals

Essential Reading


Ashby and Jones, Engineering Materials 2, third edition, Butterworth-Heinemann, 2006.



Recommended Reading


Polmear, Light Alloys, fourth edition, Arnold , 2006.



Last Updated