Investigation on dissimilar laser welding of advanced high strength steel sheets for the automotive industry
Russo Spena, P
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To support the use of advanced high strength steels in car body design and fabrication, an investigation was carried out on dissimilar butt laser welding between TWinning Induced Plasticity (TWIP) steels, Dual Phase (DP) steels, hot stamping boron (22MnB5) steels, and TRansformation Induced Plasticity (TRIP) steels. The base materials and the weldments were fully characterized by means of metallography, microhardness, and tensile tests. Digital image analysis was also used to provide additional information on the local strain field in the joint during the tensile tests. Fractographic examination was finally performed on the fracture surfaces of the tensile samples. The dissimilar joints between the DP, 22MnB5, and TRIP steels exhibit good resistance properties. On the contrary, the dissimilar joints encompassing the TWIP steel exhibit poor mechanical strength and fail along the weld seam by intergranular fracture, probably due to presence of Mn segregations. Therefore, the laser welding of TWIP steel with other advanced high strength steels is not recommended without the use of proper metal fillers. Dissimilar laser welding of DP, TRIP and 22MnB5 combinations, on the contrary, can be a solution to assemble car body parts made of these steel grades.