A new approach to study the influence of the weld bead morphology on the fatigue behaviour of Ti–6Al–4V laser beam-welded butt joints

Luca Boccarusso, Giuseppe Arleo, Antonello Astarita, Franco Bernardo, Piero De Fazio, Massimo Durante, Fabrizio Memola Capece Minutolo, Raffaele Sepe, Antonino Squillace

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13 Citations (Scopus)


Ti–6Al–4V is an alloy increasingly used in aeronautics due to its high mechanical properties coupled with lightness. An effective technology used to manufacture titanium components with a reduced buy-to-fly ratio is laser beam welding. Previous studies showed that the key factor that rules the mechanical properties and the fatigue life of the joint is its morphology. The aims of this paper were to investigate the influence of the geometrical features of the joints (height of the top and root reinforcement, depth and radius of the underfill, and the valley–valley underfill distance) on their mechanical properties and also to conduct a finite element (FE) analysis on the real geometry of the welded joints. Ti–6Al–4V rolled sheets 3.2 mm thick were welded in butt joint configuration using a laser source and their performance was studied in terms of weld morphology, microstructure, Vickers microhardness and fatigue life. A full factorial plan, designed varying the welding speed and laser power, was carried out. The real geometry and then the joint morphology were studied through an innovative approach: for each specimen, both the total weld face and the total root surface were acquired using a confocal microscope. Finally, through these acquisitions, the clouds of points of the scanned surfaces were used in order to carry out a FE analysis capable of providing a stress concentration factor, Kt, value for each detected joint. The main results are the realization of a reliable FE model by an experimental agreement and the relationship found amongst the fatigue performances and some noticeable metallurgical and geometrical features, such as the underfill depth and the aspect ratio defined as the ratio between the maximum height of the joint and the valley–valley underfill distance.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)75 - 88
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology
Issue number1-4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2017


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Software
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

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