Time-dependency of mechanical properties and component behavior after friction stir welding

  • Max HossfeldEmail author


This paper reports on the time dependency of mechanical properties and component behavior during the first hours after friction stir welding (FSW). Three different aluminum alloys, two age-hardened alloys AA 6014-T4 and 6016-T4 and as a reference 5182-O/H111, are welded and samples are taken from the steady-state region immediately. Those samples are examined at various time intervals by means of tensile and hardness testing to quantify local properties and their recovery over time. Initially, the FSW process leads to a significant reduction in mechanical properties of the age-hardened alloys and to an altered, time-dependent component behavior as opposed to the base material. For AA 6014 and 6016, all mechanical properties recover significantly within a few hours after welding, whereby the gradient is initially very steep and levels out after 1–2 days. Gradients of up to 6 MPa/h and relative increases of more than 25% are observed for ultimate tensile strength within the first 2 days. As such, the increase in strength within the heat-affected zone and with it the entire welded component can be compared to natural aging after solution annealing. The results show the importance of considering the time dependency for weld qualification and also for comparing studies of age-hardenable alloys.


Friction stir welding Time-dependent component behavior Recovery and evolution of mechanical properties Weld qualification 


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The author thanks Andrea Gommeringer, Oliver Volz, and Rudi Scheck for their great flexibility and effort regarding some of the time-critical experimental work.

Funding information

Parts of this study was supported by the German Research Foundation (DFG) Project RO 651/16-1.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Ltd., part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Materials Testing InstituteUniversity of StuttgartStuttgartGermany
  2. 2.Institut für Strahlwerkzeuge (IFSW)University of StuttgartStuttgartGermany

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