Research Papers

Seam Welding of Aluminum Sheet Using Ultrasonic Additive Manufacturing System

[+] Author and Article Information
Paul J. Wolcott

Center for Ultrasonic Additive Manufacturing,
The Ohio State University,
Columbus, OH 43210
e-mail: wolcott.27@osu.edu

Christopher Pawlowski

Center for Ultrasonic Additive Manufacturing,
The Ohio State University,
Columbus, OH 43210
e-mail: pawlowski.24@osu.edu

Leon M. Headings

Center for Ultrasonic Additive Manufacturing,
The Ohio State University,
Columbus, OH 43210
e-mail: headings.4@osu.edu

Marcelo J. Dapino

Center for Ultrasonic Additive Manufacturing,
The Ohio State University,
Columbus, OH 43210
e-mail: dapino.1@osu.edu

1Corresponding author.

Manuscript received April 27, 2015; final manuscript received June 20, 2016; published online August 15, 2016. Assoc. Editor: Wayne Cai.

J. Manuf. Sci. Eng 139(1), 011010 (Aug 15, 2016) (8 pages) Paper No: MANU-15-1202; doi: 10.1115/1.4034007 History: Received April 27, 2015; Revised June 20, 2016

Ultrasonic welding was investigated as a method of joining 0.076 in. (1.93 mm) thick aluminum 6061 flat sheet material. Joints were produced with ultrasonic additive manufacturing (UAM) equipment in a modified application of the ultrasonic welding process. Through joint design development, successful welds were achieved with a scarf joint configuration. Using a design of experiments (DOE) approach, weld parameters including weld amplitude, scarf angle, and weld speed were optimized for mechanical strength. Lower angles and higher amplitudes were found to provide the highest strengths within the levels tested. Finite-element studies indicate that 5 deg and 10 deg angles produce an increased relative motion of the workpieces as compared to 15 deg, 20 deg, and 25 deg angles, likely leading to increased strength. Successful joints showed no indication of voids under optical microscopy. As-welded joints produce tensile strengths of 221 MPa, while heat treated joints produce tensile strengths of 310 MPa, comparable to heat treated bulk material. High-temperature tensile testing was conducted at 210 °C, with samples exhibiting strengths of 184.1 MPa, similar to bulk material. Room temperature fatigue testing resulted in cyclic failures at approximately 190,000 cycles on average, approaching that of bulk material.

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Fig. 1

Concept for using a UAM welder to join two metal sheets

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Fig. 2

Image of 0.016 in. (0.406 mm) thickness scoping trial for Al 6061

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Fig. 3

Lap joint (a) schematic and (b) cross section

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Fig. 4

Angled lap joint (a) schematic and (b) cross section

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Fig. 5

Scarf joint (a) schematic and (b) cross section

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Fig. 6

Scarf joint with welding on both sides: (a) schematic and (b) cross section

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Fig. 7

Test specimen geometry for tensile testing (dimensions are in millimeters), with 0.065 in. (1.651 mm) thickness

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Fig. 8

Main effects plots for UTS

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Fig. 9

Boundary conditions and loads applied to FEA model

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Fig. 10

Horizontal displacement results for each of the five angles modeled: (a) 5 deg, (b) 10 deg, (c) 15 deg, (d) 20 deg, and (e) 25 deg

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Fig. 11

(a) Representative room temperature tensile test results for as-built and heat treated joints, (b) fracture surface of as-built joint, and (c) fracture surface of heat treated joint



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