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The weld microstructure

Subjects of Interest

Part I The fusion zone


Objectives/Introduction Nucleation and growth in the fusion zone Nucleation mechanisms and solidification modes Weld pool shape and grain structure Grain structure control

Suranaree University of Technology

Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

The weld microstructure


Subjects of Interest

Part II The partially melted zone


Formation of the partially melted zone Difficulties associated with the partially melted zone

Part III The heat - affected zone


Recrystallisation and grain growth in the heat-affected zone Effect of welding parameters on HAZ

Suranaree University of Technology

Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Objectives

This chapter provides information on the development of grain structure in the fusion zone, partially melted zone and heat affected zone. This also includes the background of nucleation and grown of grain in the weld pool, the formation of the partially melted zone and phase transformation of heat affected zone Students are required to identify the effect of welding parameter on the grain structure in the fusion zone, heat affected zone and techniques used for weld microstructure improvement.

Suranaree University of Technology

Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Part I: The fusion zone


Similar to a casting process, the microstructure in the weld zone is expected to significantly change due to remelting and solidification of metal at the temperature beyond the effective liquidus temperature. However fusion welding is much more complex due to physical interactions between the heat source and the base metal. Nucleation and growth of the new grains occur at the surface of the base metal in welding rather than at the casting mould wall.
www.llnl.gov Fusion zone

Cast structure

Fusion line Base metal

Fusion welding
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Tapany Udomphol

Welding structure

Sep-Dec 2007

Effect of welding speed on weld structure


1000 mm/min Axial grains

Columnar grains

Columnar grains Weld direction

250 mm/min

Axial grains

Columnar grains

Columnar grains

GTAW of 99.96% aluminium (a) 1000 mm/min and (b) 250 mm/min welding speeds.
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Tapany

Axial grains of GTAW (a) 1100 aluminium at 12.7 mm/s welding speed, (b) 2014 aluminium at 3.6/s welding speed. Sep-Dec 2007 Udomphol

Effect of heat input on weld structure


Weld cross sections A slight tendency for the elements C, Mn, Si to decrease (in the composition of the weld) when the heat input increases.
0.6 kJ/mm 1.0 kJ/mm

Heat input

Weld bead size HAZ size


2.2 kJ/mm 4.3 kJ/mm Typical macrosegregation of multipass welds deposited with different heat inputs
Tapany Udomphol

Suranaree University of Technology

Sep-Dec 2007

Nucleation and growth in the fusion zone


Nucleation theory A crystal can nucleate from a liquid on a flat substrate if the energy barrier G is over come, according to Turnbulls equation.
3 2 4 LC Tm G = (2 3 cos + cos 2 ) 3(H m T ) 2

Note: If the liquid wets the substrate completely, = 0 G=0

where

LC LS CS
Tm Hm T

is the surface energy of the liquid-crystal interface is the surface energy of the liquid-substrate interface is the surface energy of the crystal-substrate interface is the equilibrium melting temperature is the latent heat of melting. is the undercooling temperature below Tm is the contact angle
Tapany Udomphol

Suranaree University of Technology

Sep-Dec 2007

Nucleation and growth at the Heat extraction fusion boundary direction


In fusion welding, the existing base-metal grains at the fusion line act as the substrate for nucleation. If the liquid metal, which is in intimate contact, wets the substrate grains completely, crystals can nucleate from the liquid metal upon the substrate without difficulties. During weld metal solidification, grains tend to grow perpendicular to the pool boundary along the maximum heat extraction.

Epitaxial growth of weld metal near fusion line.

Note: for FCC and BCC structures, columnar dendrites (or cell) grow in the <100> direction.
Suranaree University of Technology
Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Epitaxial growth in welding


In autogenous welding, (no filler), new crystal nucleates by arranging atoms from the base metal grains without altering their existing crystallographic orientations. Epitaxial growth
Fusion boundary
Weld metal

Base metal

Epitaxial growth at the fusion boundary

Crystal structure FCC BCC HCP BCT

Easy growth direction <100> <100> <1010> <110>

Examples Aluminium alloys Austenitic stainless steels Carbon steels, ferritic stainless steels Titanium, magnesium Tin

Easy growth direction of different alloys


Suranaree University of Technology
Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

[111]

Grain orientations in base metal and fusion zone


(a)

[001] [010]

Random orientation

Fusion zone

HAZ

HAZ

(b)

Preferred orientation

Base metal

Base metal
0.5 mm

Fusion line Centreline

Fusion line Grain orientations in (a) base metal and (b) fusion zone obtained from EBSD analysis
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Electron beam welding of beta titanium alloys


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Sep-Dec 2007

Non-epitaxial growth in welding


Non-epitaxial growth can be observed in welding with filler metals or welding with two different metals. new grains will have to nucleate on the heterogeneous sites at the fusion boundary. The fusion boundary exhibits random misorientations between base metal grains and weld metal grains. The weld metal grains may or may not follow special orientation relationships with the base metal grains they are in contact with.
Weld metal

Fusion boundary

Base metal

Non-epitaxial growth at the fusion boundary of 409 stainless steel (bcc) welded with Monel (70Ni30Cu) filler wire (fcc), (a) optical, (b) SEM.
Suranaree University of Technology
Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Epitaxial and non epitaxial growth at the fusion boundaries


Ti alloy

Epitaxial growth from the fusion boundary of autogenous TIG welding of titanium alloy.
HAZ Ti base metal

Ti base metal

HAZ

2 mm

Fusion zone

Ti alloy

Non-epitaxial growth from the fusion boundary of Ti-679 alloy TIG welding with titanium alloy as filler metal.

Ti679 base metal

HAZ

HAZ

Ti679 base metal

Fusion zone
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Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Solidification modes
The fusion zone microstructure depends on the solidification behaviour of the weld pool, which controls the size and shape of the grains, segregation, and the distribution of inclusions and porosity. As constitutional supercooling increases, the solidification mode changes from planar cellular dendritic.
Planar

Supercooling

Heterogeneous nucleation

Cellular

Promotes equiaxed grain formation


Columnar dendritic

Time
Equiaxed dendritic

Size of dendrite

Suranaree University of Technology

Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Growth rate and temperature gradient


The growth rate R is low along the fusion line and increases toward the centreline. Maximum temperature is in the centre and then decreases toward the fusion line. since the pool is elongated, temperature gradient G is highest at the fusion line and less at the centreline. Weld microstructure varies noticeably from the edge to the centreline of the weld.

Weld pool

Since GCL < GFL, and RCL >> RFL


Centreline (CL) Fusion line (FL)

G G << R CL R FL

Variation of temperature gradient G and growth rate R along pool boundary.


Suranaree University of Technology
Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Growth rate and temperature gradient

Temperature gradient G and growth rate R dominate the solidification microstructure.


Suranaree University of Technology
Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Variations in growth mode across weld


The ratio G/R decreases from the fusion line toward the centreline. Solidification mode may change from planar to cellular, columnar dendritic and equiaxed dendritic across the fusion zone. Grains grow in the planar mode along the easy growth direction <100> of the base metal grains.
Pool boundary

Fusion line

Variation in solidification mode across the fusion zone.


Suranaree University of Technology
Tapany Udomphol

Planar to cellular and cellular to dendritic transitions in 1100 Al welded Sep-Dec 2007 with 4047 filler.

Weld metal nucleation mechanisms


Dendrite fragmentation
Weld pool convection causes fragmentation of dendrite tips in the mushy zone and then carried into the bulk weld pool, acting as nucleii for new grains. There are three possible nucleation mechanisms for new grains in welding.

Grain detachment
Weld pool convection also causes partially melted grains to detach themselves from the solid-liquid mixture surrounding the weld pool giving nucleii for new grains.

Heterogeneous nucleation
Foreign particles present in the weld pool can act as heterogeneous nuclei.

Surface nucleation
Surface nucleation is induced by applying cooling gas or by instantaneous reduction or removal of heat input at the weld pool surface.
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Nucleation mechanisms during welding (a) top view, (b) side view.
Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Heterogeneous nucleation

Heterogeneous nucleation and formation of equiaxed grains in weld metal.

Ex: 1) In GTAW of aluminium, TiB2 particle is found to act as heterogeneous nuclei (grain refiner as in casting). 2) In GTAW of ferritic stainless steel, TiN particles act as heterogeneous nuclei.
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TiB2 particle TiN as heterogeneous nuclei in ferritic stainless steel.


Tapany Udomphol

Heterogeneous nuclei in GTAW of 6061 Al (a) optical, (b) EDS analysis, (c ) SEM. Sep-Dec 2007

Effect of welding parameter on heterogeneous nucleation


Heat input Welding speed Amount of equiaxed grains

Effect of welding speed and heat input on heterogeneous nucleation.


Suranaree University of Technology

(a) 70Ax11V heat input and 5.1 mm/s welding speed, (b) 120Ax11V heat input and 12.7 mm/s welding speed.
Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Weld pool structure


If the weld pool is quenched, its microstructures at different positions can be revealed, i.e., aluminium weld pool structure, see fig. Microstructure near the fusion line consists of partially melted materials (PMM) and mushy zone (MZ).

Quenched pool (L)

Quenched pool (L)

PMM(S+L) MZ(S+L)

PMM(S+L)

S solid dendrite L interdendritic liquid PMM partially melted material


Base metal (S) Base metal (S)

(a) Sketch of weld pool, (b) microstructure at position 1, (c ) microstructure at position 2.


Suranaree University of Technology
Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Weld pool structure


centreline

The mushy zone behind the shaded area consists of solid dendrites (S) and interdendritic liquid (L).

Fusion line

Partially melted materials (PMM) consists of solid grains (S) that are partially melted and intergranular liquid (L).
Microstructure around the weld pool boundary of aluminium alloy (a) phase diagram, (b) thermal cycles, (c ) microstructure of solid plus liquid around weld pool.
Suranaree University of Technology
Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Weld pool shape and grain structure


The weld pool becomes teardrop shaped at high welding speeds and elliptical at low welding speeds. Since the columnar grains tend to grow perpendicular to the weld pool boundary, therefore the trailing boundary of a teardrop shaped weld pool is essentially straight whereas that of elliptical weld pool is curved. Axial grains can also exist in the fusion zone, which initiate from the fusion boundary and align along the length of the weld, blocking the columnar grains growing inward from the fusion lines. Note: axial grains has been reported in Al alloys, austenitic stainless steels and iridium alloys.
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Weld direction

High speed

Top view

Teardrop

Elliptical

Low speed
Effect of welding speed on columnar grain structure in weld metal.

Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Effect of electrode diameter on weld structure


Weld cross sections

Electrode diameter Weld bead size Amount of weld bead HAZ size Increase the electrode diameter will increase the heat input and this also coarse microstructure. increase the cooling time.
Suranaree University of Technology
Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Grain structure control


The weld structure significantly affects mechanical properties. Similar to casting, refining and alteration of weld grain structure are considered to be beneficial. There are several techniques used;

Inoculation Arc oscillation Arc pulsation Stimulated surface nucleation Manipulation of columnar grains Gravity
Suranaree University of Technology
Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Inoculation
Similar to casting, inoculants are added into the liquid weld metal to promote heterogeneous nucleation, giving very fine equiaxed grains.
Weld metal structure

1) Titanium carbide powder and ferrotitanium-titanium carbide mixture used in SAW of mild steels. 2) Titanium used in SAW of C-Mn stainless steels and GTAW of Al-Li-Cu alloy. 3) Ti and Zr used in aluminium welds. 4) Aluminium nitride used in Cr-Ni iron base alloys.
Weld metal structure Effect of inoculation on grain structure in SAW of C-Mn steel (a) without inoculation (b) inoculation with titanium.
Suranaree University of Technology
Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Effects of inoculation on grain structure


Refining of grain structure of the weld helps to improve weld metal ductility. Note: Heterogeneous nucleation in welding is more effective than dendritic fragmentation since the liquid pool and the mushy zone are quite small in comparison to those of casting.

Effect of grain size on weld metal ductility

Effect of inoculants on grain structure in GTAW of 2090 Al-Li-Cu alloy (a) 2319 Al-Cu filler metal, (b) 2319 Al-Cu filler metal inoculated with 0.38% Ti.
Suranaree University of Technology
Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Weld pool stirring


Weld pool stirring can be achieved by applying an alternating magnetic field parallel to the welding electrode. Stirring the weld pool tends to lower the weld pool temperature, thus help heterogeneous nuclei survive (in cooperation with inoculants addition).
Columnar grains Fine equiaxed grains Columnar grains

Schematic showing application of external magnetic field during autogenous GTAW.


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Effect of electromagnetic pool stirring on grain structure in GTAW of 409 ferritic stainless steel (a) without stirring, (b) with stirring.
Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Arc oscillation
Arc oscillation can be produced by 1) Magnetically oscillating the arc column using a single or multiple magnetic probe. 2) Mechanically vibrating the welding torch. Grain refining is achieved by dendrite fragmentation and heterogeneous nucleation.

Arc oscillating

Arc vibration amplitude


Tapany Udomphol

Grain size
Sep-Dec 2007

Suranaree University of Technology

Manipulation of columnar grains


Orientation of columnar grains can be manipulated through lowfrequency arc oscillation (~ 1 Hz)

(a) Transverse arc oscillation

(b) Circular arc oscillation

Suranaree University of Technology

Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Arc pulsation
Arc pulsation is obtained by pulsing the weld current (using peak and base current).
AC pulsed current

The liquid metal was undercooled when the heat input was suddenly reduced during the low-current cycle of pulsed arc welding. Grain refinement is due to surface nucleation and/or heterogeneous nucleation in pulsed welding with the aid of grain refiner such as 0.04wt% Ti in 6061 Al alloy.
Equiaxed grains in pulsed arc weld of 6061 aluminium.
Suranaree University of Technology
Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Effect of arc oscillation and pulsation on weld microstructure

(a) No arc pulsing or oscillation, (b) with arc pulsing, (c ) with arc oscillation, (d) with both arc pulsing and oscillation.
Suranaree University of Technology
Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Stimulated surface nucleation


A stream of cool argon gas is directed on the free surface of molten metal to cause thermal undercooling and induce surface nucleation. Small solidification nuclei are formed at the free surface and showered down into the bulk liquid metal. These nuclei then grew and became small equiaxed grains.

Suranaree University of Technology

Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007

Gravity
GTAW of 2195 aluminium under high gravity produced by a centrifuge welding system and eliminated the narrow band of nondendritic equiaxed grains along the fusion boundary.

Suranaree University of Technology

Tapany Udomphol

Sep-Dec 2007