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Evaluation of narrowed weld pool shapes and their effect on resulting potential defects during deep penetration laser beam welding

Bachmann, Marcel; Meng, Xiangmeng; Artinov, Antoni; Rethmeier, Michael

This study presents mechanisms of the evolution of a narrowed region in the weld pool center during deep penetration laser beam welding. In numerous numerical studies presented in this study, it was also found that the local reduction of the weld pool size can cause detrimental effects on the melt flow behavior and the resulting properties of the welds. A particularly large influence of this effect was identified in three aspects. First, the local variation of the solidification sequence of the weld pool causes an increase in the hot-cracking susceptibility due to a locally delayed solidification. Second, it was proven that a change in the local length and width of the weld pool is associated with an adverse impact on the potential flow routes of the molten material that induces stronger local variations of its solidification. Thus, the element mixing, e.g., during the welding with filler materials, is blocked. This leads to a nonhomogeneous chemical composition of the final weld and can cause undesired effects on the final material properties. Finally, another observed effect is related to the reduced ability of process pores to reach the top surface. As this type of porosity is usually produced around the keyhole tip, the change of the fluid flow regime above this area plays a significant role in determining the final path of the pores until the premature solidification in the middle of the weld pool captures them. This study summarizes mainly numerical results that were supported by selected experimental validation results.
Published in: Journal of Laser Applications, 10.2351/7.0000733, Laser Inst. of America