Springer Nature is making SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 research free. View research | View latest news | Sign up for updates

Material-flow behavior during friction-stir welding of 6082-T6 aluminum alloy


Material-flow behavior during friction-stir welding of 6082-T6 aluminum alloy has been visualized by marker insert technique. Four stacked layers were evolved in welding nugget zone (WNZ) in the transverse section. The material-flow behavior in vertical direction was detected by observing the distribution of Cu foil fragments and Al-Cu intermetallic compounds. The downward and upward flows encounter each other at the advancing side in the material depositing process, changing the morphology of WNZ. A conceptual balanced-flow model and a plastic material-flow model were used to describe the material-flow behavior, and the origin of the downward material flow in the advancing side was discussed. The excess-material flow derived by the welding tool due to the existence of the tilt angle is crucial to the weld formation.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.


  1. 1.

    Thomas MW, Nicholas J, Needham JC, Much MG, Templesmith P, Dawes CJ (1995) Friction stir butt welding, GB Patent Application no. 9125978 · 8, 1991; US Patent no. 5460317, 1995

  2. 2.

    Mahoney MW, Rhodes CG, Flintoff JG, Spurling RA, Bingel WH (1998) Properties of friction-stir-welded 7075 T651 aluminum. Metall Mater Trans A 29:1955–1964

  3. 3.

    Colligan K (1999) Material flow behavior during friction stir welding of aluminum. Weld J 78:229–237

  4. 4.

    Guerra M, Schmidt C, McClure JC, Murr LE, Nunes AC (2002) Flow patterns during friction stir welding. Mater Charact 49:95–101

  5. 5.

    Kumar K, Kailas SV (2010) Positional dependence of material flow in friction stir welding: analysis of joint line remnant and its relevance to dissimilar metal welding. Sci Technol Weld Join 15:305–311

  6. 6.

    Reynolds AP (2000) Visualisation of material flow in autogenous friction stir welds. Sci Technol Weld Join 5:120–124

  7. 7.

    Zhao YH, Lin SB, Qu FX, Wu L (2006) Influence of pin geometry on material flow in friction stir welding process. Mater Sci Technol 22:45–50

  8. 8.

    Schmidt HNB, Dickerson TL, Hattel JH (2006) Material flow in butt friction stir welds in AA2024-T3. Acta Mater 54:1199–1209

  9. 9.

    Morisada Y, Fujii H, Kawahito Y, Nakata K, Tanaka M (2011) Three-dimensional visualization of material flow during friction stir welding by two pairs of X-ray transmission systems. Scr Mater 65:1085–1088

  10. 10.

    Xu SW, Deng XM (2008) A study of texture patterns in friction stir welds. Acta Mater 56:1326–1341

  11. 11.

    Fonda R, Reynolds A, Feng CR, Knipling K, Rowenhorst D (2013) Material flow in friction stir welds. Metall Mater Trans A 44:337–344

  12. 12.

    Chowdhury SH, Chen DL, Bhole SD, Cao X, Wanjara P (2013) Friction stir welded AZ31 magnesium alloy: microstructure, texture, and tensile properties. Metall Mater Trans A 44:323–336

  13. 13.

    Morita T, Yamanaka M (2014) Microstructural evolution and mechanical properties of friction-stir-welded Al-Mg-Si joint. Mater Sci Eng A 595:196–204

  14. 14.

    Naik BS, Chen DL, Cao X, Wanjara P (2014) Texture development in a friction stir lap-welded AZ31B magnesium alloy. Metall Mater Trans A 45:4333–4349

  15. 15.

    Wang T, Zou Y, Matsuda K (2016) Micro-structure and micro-textural studies of friction stir welded AA6061-T6 subjected to different rotation speeds. Mater Des 90:13–21

  16. 16.

    Zhang Z, Zhang HW (2009) Numerical studies on controlling of process parameters in friction stir welding. J Mater Process Technol 209:241–270

  17. 17.

    Edwards PD, Ramulu M (2015) Material flow during friction stir welding of Ti-6Al-4V. J Mater Process Technol 218:107–115

  18. 18.

    Elangovan K, Balasubramanian V (2007) Influences of pin profile and rotational speed of the tool on the formation of friction stir processing zone in AA2219 aluminium alloy. Mater Sci Eng A 459:7–18

  19. 19.

    Leal RM, Leitão C, Loureiro A, Rodrigues DM, Vilaça P (2008) Material flow in heterogeneous friction stir welding of thin aluminium sheets: effect of shoulder geometry. Mater Sci Eng A 498:384–391

  20. 20.

    Gratecap F, Girard M, Marya S, Racineux G (2012) Exploring material flow in friction stir welding: tool eccentricity and formation of banded structures. Int J Mater Form 5:99–107

  21. 21.

    Rashidi A, Mostafapour A (2015) Influence of tool pin geometry and moving paths of tool on channel formation mechanism in modified friction stir channeling technique. Int J Adv Manuf Technol 80:1087–1096

  22. 22.

    Kumar K, Kailas SV (2008) The role of friction stir welding tool on material flow and weld formation. Mater Sci Eng A 485:367–374

  23. 23.

    Nandan R, Roy GG, Lienert TJ, Debroy T (2007) Three-dimensional heat and material flow during friction stir welding of mild steel. Acta Mater 55:883–895

  24. 24.

    Arbegast WJ (2008) A flow-partitioned deformation zone model for defect formation during friction stir welding. Scr Mater 58:372–376

  25. 25.

    Li WY, Li JF, Zhang ZH, Gao DL, Chao YJ (2013) Metal flow during friction stir welding of 7075-T651 aluminum alloy. Exp Mech 53:1573–1582

  26. 26.

    Colegrove PA, Shercliff HR (2005) 3-dimensional CFD modelling of flow round a threaded friction stir welding tool profile. J Mater Process Technol 169:320–327

  27. 27.

    Atharifar H, Lin D, Kovacevic R (2009) Numerical and experimental investigations on the loads carried by the tool during friction stir welding. J Mater Eng Perform 18:339–350

  28. 28.

    Carlone P, Palazzo GS (2013) Influence of process parameters on microstructure and mechanical properties in AA2024-T3 friction stir welding. Metall Microstruct Anal 2:213–222

  29. 29.

    Ouyang JH, Kovacevic R (2002) Material flow and microstructure in the friction stir butt welds of the same and dissimilar aluminum alloys. J Mater Eng Perform 11:51–63

  30. 30.

    Guo JF, Chen HC, Sun CN, Bi G, Sun Z, Wei J (2014) Friction stir welding of dissimilar materials between AA6061 and AA7075 Al alloys effects of process parameters. Mater Des 56:185–192

  31. 31.

    Xue P, Ni DR, Wang D, Xiao BL, Ma ZY (2011) Effect of friction stir welding parameters on the microstructure and mechanical properties of the dissimilar Al–Cu joints. Mater Sci Eng A 528:4683–4689

  32. 32.

    Al-Roubaiy AO, Nabat SM, Batako ADL (2014) Experimental and theoretical analysis of friction stir welding of Al-Cu joints. Int J Adv Manuf Technol 71:1631–1642

  33. 33.

    Carlone P, Astarita A, Palazzo GS, Paradiso V, Squillace A (2015) Microstructural aspects in Al-Cu dissimilar joining by FSW. Int J Adv Manuf Technol 79:1109–1116

  34. 34.

    Ji SD, Jin YY, Yue YM, Gao SS, Huang YX, Wang L (2013) Effect of temperature on material transfer behavior at different stages of friction stir welded 7075-T6 aluminum alloy. J Mater Sci Technol 29:955–960

  35. 35.

    Krishnan KN (2002) On the formation of onion rings in friction stir welds. Mater Sci Eng A 327:246–251

  36. 36.

    Cui GR, Ma ZY, Li SX (2008) Periodical plastic flow pattern in friction stir processed Al-Mg alloy. Scr Mater 58:1082–1085

  37. 37.

    Zhang Z, Xiao BL, Wang D, Ma ZY (2011) Effect of alclad layer on material flow and defect formation in friction-stir-welded 2024 aluminum alloy. Metall Mater Trans A 42:1717–1726

  38. 38.

    Schneider JA, Nunes AC (2004) Characterization of plastic flow and resulting microtextures in a friction stir weld. Metall Mater Trans B 35:777–783

  39. 39.

    Doude HR, Schneider JA, Nunes AC (2014) Influence of the tool shoulder contact conditions on the material flow during friction stir welding. Metall Mater Trans A 45:4411–4422

Download references

Author information

Correspondence to Yongxian Huang.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Huang, Y., Wang, Y., Wan, L. et al. Material-flow behavior during friction-stir welding of 6082-T6 aluminum alloy. Int J Adv Manuf Technol 87, 1115–1123 (2016).

Download citation


  • Friction-stir welding
  • Aluminum alloy
  • Marker material
  • Material-flow behavior
  • Welding nugget zone