The oil and gas industry comprises various complex processes and techniques. One such crucial technique is heat treatment. It is an essential process of manufacturing different materials used in the oil and gas industries.
It is a process that involves either heating or chilling of material, typically to extreme temperatures, to achieve the desired result, such as the hardening or softening of a material.
This is a must-know topic in oil and gas courses for mechanical engineers.
There are specific processes applied to the metals to convert them into a particular shape or structure. Inversely, some methods are implemented to restore metals to their original form.
Heat treatment is the process where the metal is heated without letting it reach its molten or melting stage and then cooling the metal in a controlled way to select desired mechanical properties. Heat treatment can either make the metal stronger or more malleable, more resistant to abrasion or more ductile.
Heat treatment techniques
In an online course for piping engineering, you will find all important topics related to manufacturing, materials used, processes. One such critical topic amongst them is heat treatment techniques.
The different heat treatment techniques that are commonly used in the oil and gas industry are –
Normalizing is one of the Heat Treatment processes involving heating steel to above a critical temperature, holding it for long enough time for transformation to occur, and cooling in air.
Normalizing is the way to increase the toughness and ductility. The normalizing process is usually applied to metals with thermal or mechanical hardening processes and require their microstructure to be normalized. After normalizing, the metal’s ductility is restored, and the hardness is reduced.
Annealing is a heat treatment process used to enhance ductility and reduce the hardness of a material. Annealing improves the formability of a material. It is a lot more difficult to bend or press hard and brittle materials without creating material fracture. This problem is resolved through annealing.
Tempering is a process of heat treating, which is used to increase the toughness of iron-based alloys. Tempering is usually performed after hardening to reduce some of the excess hardness. It is done by heating the metal to some temperature below the critical point for a certain period, then allowing it to cool in still air.
Tempering reduces brittleness and internal stresses.
Hot forming is an operation to produce permanent deformation, and it is performed after the plate has been heated to the temperature required to produce grain refinement.
In this process, heat is applied to soften the piece of metal, which is a sheet, bar, tube or wire. The shape of the metal is then altered by applying some form of pressure. The hot forming process can form a variety of complex parts and hold relatively tight tolerances.
There are various other heat treatment processes, but these are the four major ones in the steel manufacturing process. For in-depth details on manufacturing processes, construction material, you can check our oil and gas training courses online.
by Debashree P
Debashree is an Aeronautical engineer by education and a curious researcher by passion. She is passionate about engineering and technology. She is an avid technology writer who has a knack for developing content for websites, newsletters, blogs, articles, advertising and marketing materials based on the requirements. Technologies of her interest include Aviation, Oil & Gas and AI.