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Characterization of Dissimilar Al-Cu BFSW Welds; Interfacial Microstructure, Flow Mechanism and Intermetallics Formation

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The purpose of this study is to elucidate the flow features of the dissimilar Al-Cu welded plates. The welding method used is Bobbin Friction Stir Welding (BFSW), and the joint is between two dissimilar materials, aluminium alloy (AA6082-T6) and pure copper. Weld samples were cut from along the weld line, and the cross-sections were polished and observed under an optical microscope (OM). Particular regions of interest were examined under a scanning electron microscope (SEM) and analysed with Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy (EDS) using the AZtec software from Oxford Instruments. The results and images attained were compared to other similar studies. The reason for fracture was mainly attributed to the welding parameters used; a higher rotational speed may be required to achieve a successful BFSW between these two materials. The impact of welding parameters on the Al-Cu flow bonding and evolution of the intermetallic compounds were identified by studying the interfacial microstructure at the location of the tool action. The work makes an original contribution to identifying the solid-phase hybrid bonding in Al-Cu joints to improve the understanding of the flow behaviours during the BFSW welding process. The microstructural evolution of the dissimilar weld has made it possible to develop a physical model proposed for the flow failure mechanism.

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Materials Sciences, Functional and Smart Materials