Back of the envelope calculations in friction stir welding – velocities, peak temperature, torque, and hardness

A. Arora, T. DebRoy and H. K. D. H. Bhadeshia


Given the complexity and resource requirements of numerical models of friction stir welding (FSW), well-tested analytical models of materials flow, peak temperatures, torque, and weld properties are needed. Here an approximate analytical technique for the calculation of three-dimensional materials flow during FSW is proposed considering the motion of an incompressible fluid induced by a solid rotating disk. The accuracy of the calculations is examined for the welding of three alloys. For the estimation of peak temperatures, the accuracy of an existing dimensionless correlation is improved using a large volume of recently published data. The improved correlation is tested against experimental data for three aluminum alloys. It is shown that the torque can be calculated analytically from the yield stress using estimated peak temperatures. An approximate relation between the hardness of the thermomechanically affected zone and the chemical composition of the aluminum alloys is proposed.

Acta Materilia 59 (2011) 2020-2028.

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