Metallurgical and Materials Transactions A

, Volume 35, Issue 1, pp 217–226 | Cite as

Electrode pitting in resistance spot welding of aluminum alloy 5182

  • I. Lum
  • E. Biro
  • Y. Zhou
  • S. Fukumoto
  • D. R. Boomer


Electrode pitting was investigated in resistance spot welding of 1.5-mm-thick sheet aluminum alloy 5182 using a medium-frequency direct-current welder and electrodes with a tip face curvature radius of 50 mm and tip face diameter of 10 mm. Detailed investigation of the metallurgical interactions between the copper electrode and aluminum alloy sheet was carried out using scanning electron microscopy/energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (SEM/EDX) and X-ray diffraction (XRD). The results indicated that electrode degradation, which eventually leads to weld failure, proceeded in four basic steps: aluminum pickup, electrode alloying with aluminum, electrode tip face pitting, and cavitation. Since pitting and cavitation result from Al pickup and alloying, periodic electrode cleaning could extend electrode tip life by limiting the buildup of Al on the tip face. This work is part of the effort to improve electrode tip life in resistance spot welding of aluminum alloys for automotive applications.


Material Transaction Joint Strength Sheet Aluminum Alloy Nugget Formation Electrode Degradation 
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Copyright information

© ASM International & TMS-The Minerals, Metals and Materials Society 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • I. Lum
    • 1
  • E. Biro
    • 1
  • Y. Zhou
    • 1
  • S. Fukumoto
    • 2
  • D. R. Boomer
    • 3
  1. 1.the Department of Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of WaterlooWaterlooCanada
  2. 2.the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Faculty of EngineeringHimeji Institute of TechnologyHyogoJapan
  3. 3.Banbury LaboratoryAlcan International LimitedOxfordshireUnited Kingdom

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