Cryogenic Deflashing Media

Custom Cryogenic Processes from Nitrofreeze®


Nitrofreeze® performs custom cryogenic processes at its Worcester, Massachusetts (USA) facility for clients throughout New England and the Northeast. The custom cryogenic processes we offer are extensions of our cryogenic treatment capabilities and include thermal cycling, stress relieving, and uphill quenching. Contact us for a quote or keep reading to learn more.

Thermal Cycling

Thermal cycling is the controlled heating and cooling of a material. As a controlled process, it’s used typically with metals such as aluminum, steel, and titanium so that they undergo a molecular structure transformation that optimizes the material’s structure. Through relieving stresses, cryogenic processing makes the material more uniform, minimizes flaws or imperfections, and improves end-use properties such as fatigue resistance, machinability, and heat distribution.

At Nitrofreeze®, thermal cycling subjects parts to cold and hot temperatures as part of a controlled cycle that’s often repeated three or more times. Cooling a material to -300°F or below relieves its inherent stresses, which will not return to pre-treatment levels once the material is returned to ambient temperature under controlled conditions. Although thermal cycling is often used with industrial metals including carbon steels and aluminum, Nitrofreeze® also works with exotic metal alloys, composites, and polymers.

Nitrofreeze® provides a range of thermal cycling services and can process your parts in dry ice, liquid nitrogen, and liquid helium. Our capabilities allow us to thermally cycle your parts at temperatures as low as -450° F and to meet nearly any thermal cycle specification. Nitrofreeze® has successfully completed custom cryogenic projects for U.S. government agencies, military and Department of Defense (DoD) contractors, universities, and private industry.

Nitro Stress Relief

Cryogenic stress relieving utilizes ultra-cold temperatures, often to -300°F or below to alter the micro-structure of metals including various grades of steel and aluminum. The process promotes a more uniform micro-structure, relief of inherent stresses and increased wear resistance in carbon steels.

Nitrofreeze® stress relieving employs a cryogenic process that employs a long hold at -300°F with the slowest ramps to and from ambient temperature in the industry. The process yields many benefits including less walk and creep (“potato chipping”) during machining, lower failure rates, and easier machining. Nitrofreeze® completes stress relieving processes every weekend and returns parts within 7 business days.

Uphill Quenching

Uphill quenching relieves residual stress in aluminum alloys that have been heat-treated, a process that increases strength and hardness. The part is immersed in a cryogenic atmosphere and, after a uniform temperature is achieved, transitioned to a heating element. Depending on the cryogenic specification, the part may be cooled in liquid nitrogen, liquid helium, dry ice bath or both. The heating element is usually boiling hot water, steam, or convection heat.

At Nitrofreeze®, uphill quenching subjects heat-treated aluminum parts to rapid temperature gradients for a specified amount of time. The cycle is repeated according to specifications or part drawings, and part temperatures are measured carefully. The high side of the quench does not exceed temperatures that would adversely affect tensile strength.

Often, uphill quenching is used with heat-treated aluminum parts for aerospace or defense applications. These components are subjected to cyclic loading that, over time, can result in part fatigue failure. Since heat treatment alone does not relieve the residual stresses that can contribute to this form of failure, uphill quenching is used. The benefits include improved mechanical properties, the elimination of machining distortion, and fewer scrapped parts.

Custom Cryogenic Processes from Nitrofreeze®

Does your project require thermal cycling, stress relieving, or uphill quenching? Ask the experts at Nitrofreeze® to review your requirements and learn more about our custom cryogenic processes. The consultation is free of charge, so contact us at the phone number and email below.

(508) 459-7447 x 105 |