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Process Modeling of Mash Seam Welding

Mass production industries widely employ mash seam welding (MSW) in manufacturing of products such as appliances and vehicle parts. During welding, two sheets of metal are held in an overlapping joint configuration between a pair of electrode wheels. Joule heating combined with pressure applied through the electrode wheels result in formation of a weld seam. Current deficit of theories and models capable of assessing the important weld quality characteristics such as the final weld geometry, overgauge, and weld nugget size, generated the need for comprehensive numerical simulation of MSW.

In this project, a fully coupled thermal-electrical-structural finite element model of the process is developed. It effectively handles severe plastic deformation characteristic to MSW. The model considers electrodes and base metal properties, and actual process parameters. Such new model provides the basis for engineering innovation in process control and optimization to obtain sound welds in MSW. The modeling framework can be readily extended to other seam welding processes (e.g., resistance seam welding and high frequency induction welding) or those processes with significant upset (e.g., projection welding).

Industry Sponsor: AO Smith

Faculty: Wei Zhang (OSU)

Graduate Student: Alexey Kuprienko 

Industry Contact: Bruce Krakauer