Local changes in the microstructure, mechanical and electrochemical properties of friction stir welded joints from aluminium of varying grain size

More Info


The present study shows results of friction stir welded (FSW) samples after different plastic deformation routes. The welds were made of coarse-grained and ultrafine-grained commercially pure aluminium. As a plastic deformation method a new hybrid process has been chosen, which resulted in obtaining samples with different characteristics of microstructure, which also differed in dependance of the examined plane. Microstructure observations showed that, regardless of the base material, due to continuous dynamic recrystallization a stir zone was characterized by equiaxial grains with an average size of 3.5–5.0 μm. However, significant differences in the changes of the microstructure in thermomechanically affected and heat affected zones have been obtained between welds. Microhardness profiles revealed a decrease in the stir zones in comparison with the initially deformed samples, but an increase for the annealed samples. Tensile tests showed differences between the samples. In the deformed samples, the rupture occurred in a stir zone, while in the undeformed samples in the base material. In addition, due to the application of 3D digital image correlation, it was possible to observe deformation and local changes between the weld zones during the tensile test. Additionally, local electrochemical measurements were performed with two sizes of working electrode, which included the application of microcapillary technique. The results showed higher corrosion resistance in 3.5% NaCl in the stir zones.