On the Fatigue Performance of Friction-Stir Welded Aluminum Alloys.
ABSTRACT: This work was undertaken in an attempt to ascertain the generic characteristics of fatigue behavior of friction-stir welded aluminum alloys. To this end, different alloy grades belonging to both the heat-treatable and non-heat-treatable types in both the cast and wrought conditions were studied. The analysis was based on the premise that the fatigue endurance of sound welds (in which internal flaws and surface quality are not the major issues) is governed by residual stress and microstructure. Considering the relatively low magnitude of the residual stresses but drastic grain refinement attributable to friction-stir welding, the fatigue performance at relatively low cyclic stress was deduced to be dictated by the microstructural factor. Accordingly, the fatigue crack typically nucleated in relatively coarse-grained base material zone; thus, the fatigue strength of the welded joints was comparable to that of the parent metal. At relatively high fatigue stress, the summary (i.e., the cyclic-plus residual-) stress may exceed the material yield strength; thus, the fatigue cracking should result from the preceding macro-scale plastic deformation. Accordingly, the fatigue failure should occur in the softest microstructural region; thus; the fatigue strength of the welded joint may be inferior to that of the original material.
Project description:The effect of the microstructure heterogeneity on the tensile plastic deformation characteristic of friction-stir-welded (FSW) dual-phase (DP) steel was investigated for the potential applications on the lightweight design of vehicles. Friction-stir-welded specimens with a butt joint configuration were prepared, and quasi-static tensile tests were conducted, to evaluate the tensile properties of DP980 dual-phase steels. The friction-stir welding led to the formation of martensite and a significant hardness rise in the stir zone (SZ), but the presence of a soft zone in the heat-affected zone (HAZ) was caused by tempering of the pre-existing martensite. Owing to the appearance of severe soft zone, DP980 FSW joint showed almost 93% joint efficiency with the view-point of ultimate tensile strength and relatively low ductility than the base metal (BM). The local tensile deformation characteristic of the FSW joints was also examined using the digital image correlation (DIC) methodology by mapping the global and local strain distribution, and was subsequently analyzed by mechanics calculation. It is found that the tensile deformation of the FSW joints is highly heterogeneous, leading to a significant decrease in global ductility. The HAZ of the joints is the weakest region where the strain localizes early, and this localization extends until fracture with a strain near 30%, while the strain in the SZ and BM is only 1% and 4%, respectively. Local constitutive properties in different heterogeneous regions through the friction-stir-welded joint was also briefly evaluated by assuming iso-stress conditions. The local stress-strain curves of individual weld zones provide a clear indication of the heterogeneity of the local mechanical properties.
Project description:Ultrasonic peening treatment (UPT) as a method of severe plastic deformation was used to treat cruciform welded joints of Q345 steel. The application of UPT achieves material surface nanocrystallization of the peening zone, reduces stress concentration, and produces residual compressive stresses at the welded toe. Micro-structure, hardness, stress relief, S-N curve, and the fatigue fracture mechanism of cruciform welded joint of Q345 steel, both before and after UPT, were analyzed in detail. The main results show that: stress concentration and residual tensile stress are the main reasons to reduce fatigue strength of cruciform welded joints. The fatigue life of cruciform welded joints is improved for surface hardening, compressive stress, and grain refinement by UPT. Residual compressive stress caused by UPT is released with the increase of fatigue life. A very significant fatigue strength improvement happens when UPT is replenished repeatedly after a certain number of cycles.
Project description:As a new treatment process after welding, the process parameters of laser shock peening (LSP) in dynamic strain aging (DSA) temperature regimes can be precisely controlled, and the process is a non-contact one. The effects of LSP at elevated temperatures on the distribution of the surface residual stress of AA6061-T6 welded joints were investigated by using X-ray diffraction technology with the sin²ϕ method and Abaqus software. The fatigue life of the welded joints was estimated by performing tensile fatigue tests. The microstructural evolution in surface and fatigue fractures of the welded joints was presented by means of surface integrity and fracture surface testing. In the DSA temperature regime of AA6061-T6 welded joints, the residual compressive stress was distributed more stably than that of LSP at room temperature. The thermal corrosion resistance and fatigue properties of the welded joints were also improved. The experimental results and numerical analysis were in mutual agreement.
Project description:Overall fatigue strengths and hardness distributions of the aluminum alloy similar and dissimilar friction stir welding (FSW) joints were determined. The local fatigue strengths as well as local tensile strengths were also obtained by using small round bar specimens extracted from specific locations, such as the stir zone, heat affected zone, and base metal. It was found from the results that fatigue fracture of the FSW joint plate specimen occurred at the location of the lowest local fatigue strength as well as the lowest hardness, regardless of microstructural evolution. To estimate the fatigue strengths of aluminum alloy FSW joints from the hardness measurements, the relationship between fatigue strength and hardness for aluminum alloys was investigated based on the present experimental results and the available wide range of data from the references. It was found as: ?a (R = -1) = 1.68 HV (?a is in MPa and HV has no unit). It was also confirmed that the estimated fatigue strengths were in good agreement with the experimental results for aluminum alloy FSW joints.
Project description:The development of Friction Stir Welding (FSW) has provided an alternative approach for producing high-quality welds, in a fast and reliable manner. This study focuses on the mechanical properties of the dissimilar friction stir welding of AA6061-T6 and AA7075-T6 aluminum alloys. The FSW process parameters such as tool rotational speed, tool traverse speed, tilt angle, and tool offset influence the mechanical properties of the friction stir welded joints significantly. A mathematical regression model is developed to determine the empirical relationship between the FSW process parameters and mechanical properties, and the results are validated. In order to obtain the optimal values of process parameters that simultaneously optimize the ultimate tensile strength, elongation, and minimum hardness in the heat affected zone (HAZ), a metaheuristic, multi objective algorithm based on biogeography based optimization is proposed. The Pareto optimal frontiers for triple and dual objective functions are obtained and the best optimal solution is selected through using two different decision making techniques, technique for order of preference by similarity to ideal solution (TOPSIS) and Shannon's entropy.
Project description:Hydraulic support is the main supporting equipment of the coal mining systems, and they are usually subjected to fatigue failure under the high dynamic load. The fracture positions are generally at welded joints where there is a serious stress concentration. In order to investigate and further improve the fatigue strength of hydraulic support, the present work first located the possible position where fatigue failure occurs through finite element analysis, and then fatigue tests were carried out on the different forms of welded joints for the dangerous parts. Finally, Fatigue strength-life (S-N) curves and fracture mechanism were studied. This research will provide a theoretical reference for the fatigue design of welded structures for hydraulic support.
Project description:The aim of this study is to evaluate the microstructures, tensile lap shear strength, and fatigue resistance of 6022-T43 aluminum alloy joints welded via a solid-state welding technique-ultrasonic spot welding (USW)-at different energy levels. An ultra-fine necklace-like equiaxed grain structure is observed along the weld line due to the occurrence of dynamic crystallization, with smaller grain sizes at lower levels of welding energy. The tensile lap shear strength, failure energy, and critical stress intensity of the welded joints first increase, reach their maximum values, and then decrease with increasing welding energy. The tensile lap shear failure mode changes from interfacial fracture at lower energy levels, to nugget pull-out at intermediate optimal energy levels, and to transverse through-thickness (TTT) crack growth at higher energy levels. The fatigue life is longer for the joints welded at an energy of 1400 J than 2000 J at higher cyclic loading levels. The fatigue failure mode changes from nugget pull-out to TTT crack growth with decreasing cyclic loading for the joints welded at 1400 J, while TTT crack growth mode remains at all cyclic loading levels for the joints welded at 2000 J. Fatigue crack basically initiates from the nugget edge, and propagates with "river-flow" patterns and characteristic fatigue striations.
Project description:Evaluation of residual stress in the weld toe region is of critical importance. In this paper, the residual stress distribution both near the surface and in depth around the weld toe was investigated using neutron diffraction, complemented with X-ray diffraction. Measurements were done on a 1300 MPa yield strength steel welded using a Low Transformation Temperature (LTT) consumable. Near surface residual stresses, as close as 39 µm below the surface, were measured using neutron diffraction and evaluated by applying a near surface data correction technique. Very steep surface stress gradients within 0.5 mm of the surface were found both at the weld toe and 2 mm into the heat affected zone (HAZ). Neutron results showed that the LTT consumable was capable of inducing near surface compressive residual stresses in all directions at the weld toe. It is concluded that there are very steep stress gradients both transverse to the weld toe line and in the depth direction, at the weld toe in LTT welds. Residual stress in the base material a few millimeters from the weld toe can be very different from the stress at the weld toe. Care must, therefore, be exercised when relating the residual stress to fatigue strength in LTT welds.
Project description:We report on interfacial characteristics and chemistry of bonded Mg-Fe interfaces welded using friction stir assisted scribe technique (FaST). Two pairs of dissimilar joints: (AZ31-DP590) and (Pure Mg-DP590) were studied to shed light on joining mechanisms responsible for bonding of "immiscible" pairs of Mg and Fe. We present first direct experimental evidence of presence of oxide layer, Al segregation by atom probe tomography and nano steel grains close to interface by transmission electron microscopy study.
Project description:Corrugated steel web with inherent high out-of-plane stiffness has a promising application in configuring large span highway bridge girders. Due to the irregularity of the configuration details, the local stress concentration poses a major fatigue problem for the welded flange plates of high strength low alloy structural steels. In this work, the methods of applying CFRP laminate and shot peening onto the surfaces of the tension flanges were employed with the purpose of improving the fatigue strength of such configuration details. The effectiveness of this method in the improvement of fatigue strength has been examined experimentally. Test results show that the shot peening significantly increases hardness and roughness in contrast to these without treatment. Also, it has beneficial effects on the fatigue strength enhancement when compared against the test data of the joints with CFRP strengthening. The stiffness degradation during the loading progress is compared with each treatment. Incorporating the stress acting on the constituent parts of the CFRP laminates, a discussion is made regarding the mechanism of the retrofit and related influencing factors such as corrosion and economic cost. This work could enhance the understanding of the CFRP and shot peening in repairing such welded details and shed light on the reinforcement design of welded joints between corrugated steel webs and flange plates.