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Effects of a Post-Weld Heat Treatment on the Mechanical Properties and Microstructure of a Friction-Stir-Welded Beryllium-Copper Alloy

1
Department of Mechanical Design Engineering, Chonbuk National University, Jeonju 54896, Korea
2
Carbon & Light Materials Application R&D Group, Korea Institute of Industrial Technology, 222, Palbok-ro, Deokjin-gu, Jeonju-City 54853, Korea
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Metals 2019, 9(4), 461; https://doi.org/10.3390/met9040461
Received: 11 March 2019 / Revised: 16 April 2019 / Accepted: 17 April 2019 / Published: 19 April 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Characterization of Welded Joints)
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Abstract

This paper investigated the microstructure and mechanical properties of a friction-stir-welded beryllium-copper alloy, which is difficult to weld with conventional fusion welding processes. Friction stir welding (FSW) was successfully conducted with a tungsten-carbide (WC) tool. Sound joints without defects were obtained with a tool rotational speed of 700 RPM and tool travel speed of 60 mm/min. A post-weld heat treatment (PWHT) of the FSW joints was performed to analyze the evolution of the microstructure at 315 °C for a half, one, two, three, four, five and eight hours, respectively. The microstructures of the joints were observed using an optical microscope (OM), a scanning electron microscope (SEM) and a transmission electron microscope (TEM). Observed softening of microstructure is suggested to be due to the dissolution of the strengthening precipitates during the FSW process, whereas the strength of the joints was recovered via the formation of the CuBe (γ′) phase during the post-weld heat treatment. However, the strength was decreased upon an excessive post-weld heat treatment exceeding three hours. It is considered that the formation of the γ phase and the coarse γ′ phase contributed to the reduction in the strength. View Full-Text
Keywords: friction stir welding; beryllium-copper alloy; mechanical properties; microstructure; post-weld heat treatment friction stir welding; beryllium-copper alloy; mechanical properties; microstructure; post-weld heat treatment
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Lim, Y.; Lee, K.; Moon, S. Effects of a Post-Weld Heat Treatment on the Mechanical Properties and Microstructure of a Friction-Stir-Welded Beryllium-Copper Alloy. Metals 2019, 9, 461.

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