The conventional manufacturing process of the automotive brazed heat exchanger includes complex preparation processes before brazing: aluminum brazing filler alloy is pre-claded on both sides of a fin by an extrusion method, and holed aluminum tubes are coated on both sides with Zn for corrosion protection by a wire arc spraying process. The intent of this study is to simplify the preparation process by kinetic spraying using all of the components, including Al-12%Si (for the brazing filler metal), Zn (for corrosion protection), and KAlF4 (flux powder). Four kinds of blended powder, with and without flux, were evaluated. The bond properties and composition distribution at the braze joint area were evaluated by SEM and an electron probe micro analyzer (EPMA). It was necessary to control the Zn content so that the corrosion resistance and brazeability of the aluminum heat exchanger would not be affected. An optimal kinetic spray condition was obtained, in order to fabricate the heat exchanger in this study. It was observed that the joints of the brazed specimens on each side of the brazing part were sounder than those achieved brazed by the conventional methods. Further, the kinetic sprayed heat exchanger showed acceptable corrosion protection.

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