Research area

HFQ and SPF forming on Al-Li alloy

Haoxiang Gao Solution Heat Treatment, Forming and in-die Quenching (HFQ) and Superplastic forming (SPF) are attractive forming techniques in nowadays manufacturing industry field. Aluminium Lithium (Al-Li) alloy is one of the increasingly popular material used in the aerospace industry.

In order to form complex-shaped Al-Li components for aeronautic applications, SPF technology is usually used, which requires the simultaneous control of many critical parameters including: temperature, strain rate via applied gas pressure and blank holding force etc. HFQ as a new forming technology is a novel hot forming technology combining forming and heat treatment in one operation.

In the past years, the HFQ technology has been used to form a number of medium and high strength aluminium alloys, such as AA5XXX, AA6XXX, AA2XXX and AA7XXX. My research project is to investigate the feasibility of HFQ forming of Al-Li alloys. Additionally, the FE simulation of SPF process on Al-Li alloy is provided.

Research keywords

  • Aluminium lithium
  • Superplastic forming
  • Finite Element Analysis (FEA)
  • HFQ
  • Sheet Metal Forming


  • 2013 – MEng & ARSM Aerospace Materials
  • 2018 - PhD Mechanical Engineering (Imperial College London)

Membership of professional bodies

  • 2013 – Associate Member of the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining
  • 2013 – Associate Member of the Royal School of Mines

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