Publication Details

Fei, Z., Pan, Z., Cuiuri, D., Li, H. & Gazder, A. A. (2019). A combination of keyhole GTAW with a trapezoidal interlayer: A new insight into armour steel welding. Materials, 12 (21), 3571-1-3571-18.


The ballistic performance of armour steel welds using austenitic filler materials is poor on account of the disparity in the mechanical properties of the weld and base metals. Consequently, a novel Keyhole Gas Tungsten ArcWelding process with a trapezoidal AISI309 austenitic stainless steel interlayer was developed to tailor chemical composition and microstructure by controlling the solidification sequence. Results show that the dilution rate in the weld metal region can reach up to 43.5% by placing a specially designed interlayer in between the base metal, providing a major scope for microstructure modification. Detailed weld analysis was undertaken by X-ray diffraction, optical and secondary and transmission electron microscopy, energy dispersive spectroscopy and electron back-scattering diffraction. The results from Vickers hardness indents and Charpy impact toughness testing at -40 °C show that the properties of the weld metal region are comparable to that of the base metal. This is ascribed to the weld metal comprising a two phase microstructure of martensite and retained austenite, which contribute to improvements in strength and toughness, respectively. Furthermore, the tailored chemical composition, microstructure and low temperature phase transformation in the weld metal may reduce the tendency toward both solidification cracking and hydrogen assisted cold cracking.



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