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15 Uses of Aluminium & Its Alloy in Transportations Industry

Contributed by: Anonymous
March 10, 2021

For many years the biggest end-use market for aluminium has been the transportation sector. More than a quarter of all aluminium is used in the global transportation & associated industry.

  1. Aluminium supports the need to develop cleaner and more sustainable means of transportation. It is lightweight, yet super flexible: meets customer demand for improved safety and comfort, stricter environmental legislation. Because of these properties, aluminium is indispensable for the upcoming EV (Electric Vehicle) revolution in the world.
  2. In Aviation around 70-80% aluminium is needed. The composition of aluminium alloys has changed over time, but the main goal of aircraft designers remains the same: build a plane that is as light as possible with the maximum possible capacity that uses the least possible amount of fuel and whose body doesn’t rust over time. It’s aluminium that allows aviation engineers to hit all these targets.
  3. The key benefit of aluminium alloys used in spacecraft is their ability to withstand high and low temperatures, vibration loads and radiation. All modern spacecraft contain 50%-90% of aluminium alloys in their parts.
  4. Aluminium alloys are used in the body of Space Shuttle vehicles, in the telescopic antenna of the Hubble space telescope; hydrogen tanks used in rockets, the tips of rockets, parts of launch vehicles and orbital stations.
  5. There are now many examples of its use in commercial vessels, rail cars both passenger and freight, marine hulls and superstructures and military vessels.
  6. Volume car production now includes aluminium as engine castings, wheels, radiators and increasingly as body parts. For general production the 5000 and 6000 series alloys provide adequate strength combined with good corrosion resistance, high toughness and ease of welding.
  7. Aluminium car body structures and panels, safety systems, suspension parts and many other new applications have been created. As a result, up to 50% weight reduction can be achieved if aluminium parts are used.
  8. Aluminium is used in construction of bicycle frames and components.
  9. Aluminium is also widely used in Ferry & Yacht construction, including small utility boats.
  10. The aluminium industry is responsible for researching and producing new body shells for high-speed trains, trams, buses, underground and regional trains in consultation with its customers in that sector. Energy saving, lightweight and design flexibility are paramount criteria.
  11. Aluminium has another very useful property: it’s very good at absorbing shock: in fact, it’s twice as effective at it as steel. For this reason, automakers have long been using aluminium in bumpers.
  12. The bottom of the revolutionary Tesla electric car is covered by 8-mm bullet proof aluminium alloy sheets that protect the battery compartment and guarantee safety at speeds of up to 200 kph. Recently the company also started installing new aluminium-titanium armour plates on its vehicles.
  13. Today aluminium freight cars are used to transport coal, various rocks and minerals as well as grain, while tanker cars made from aluminium carry acids. An aluminium freight car is a third lighter than a steel car. Its higher initial costs are recouped in the first two years of operation because it can carry more cargo.
  14. In long distance rail systems aluminium is widely used in modern rail systems, which began to be introduced back in the 1980s. In high-speed trains, aluminium makes it possible to reduce the weight & reduces the bends in the rails that add to the friction resistance & aerodynamic shape.
  15. Modern seafaring vessels are increasingly being built from so-called marine aluminium, an umbrella term that refers to a broad range of aluminium-magnesium alloys used in mechanical engineering. These alloys have outstanding corrosion resistance in both fresh- and seawater.