A three-dimensional multiphysical transient model was developed to investigate keyhole formation, weld pool dynamics, and mass transfer in laser welding of dissimilar materials. The coupling of heat transfer, fluid flow, keyhole free surface evolution, and solute diffusion between dissimilar metals was simulated. The adaptive heat source model was used to trace the change of keyhole shape, and the Rayleigh scattering of the laser beam was considered. The keyhole wall was calculated using the fluid volume equation, primarily considering the recoil pressure induced by metal evaporation, surface tension, and hydrostatic pressure. Fluid flow, diffusion, and keyhole formation were considered simultaneously in mass transport processes. Welding experiments of 304L stainless steel and industrial pure titanium TA2 were performed to verify the simulation results. It is shown that spatters are shaped during the welding process. The thickness of the intermetallic reaction layer between the two metals and the diffusion of elements in the weld are calculated, which are important criteria for welding quality. The simulation results correspond well with the experimental results.
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