Effect of Zinc Interlayer in Microstructure Evolution and Mechanical Properties in Dissimilar Friction Stir Welding of Aluminum to Titanium
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The welding of aluminum (Al) and titanium (Ti) is difficult and challenging due to the differences in their chemical and physical properties, and the formation of brittle intermetallic phases. In the present experiment, a zinc (Zn) interlayer was used during friction stir welding of Al to Ti. The weld was characterized in detail to understand the mechanisms associated with microstructural evolution and improvement in mechanical properties of the weld. X-ray computed tomography results reveal three-dimensional distribution of particles and flakes of titanium in the weld nugget. It was also observed that Ti particles are inhomogeneously distributed in the weld and the distribution depends on their morphology. Such a distribution of Ti was informative in understanding material flow. In addition, the consolidation of Zn in the Al matrix reveals the nature of material flow in the weld nugget as well. The importance of the Zn interlayer and mechanism of phase formation was explored in this study. It was characterized that the mechanical mixing of Zn with Al and Ti alters phase evolution and restricts the formation of conventional Al3Ti intermetallic phase. The presence of zinc homogenizes elemental distribution and inhibits the formation of brittle intermetallic phases, which leads to a substantial improvement in mechanical properties of the weld.
Keywordsdissimilar friction stir weld intermetallic phase mechanical properties x-ray tomography zinc interlayer
Authors would like to thank the Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO), Department of Science and Technology (DST), Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD), India, for support and research funding. We would also like to thank Institute X-ray Facility and Advanced Facility for Microscopy and Microanalysis (AFMM) at Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore, for providing the facilities.
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