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Microstructure and Mechanical Property Change During FSW and GTAW of Al6061 Alloy


The variation of morphology and mechanical properties of Al6061 automotive aluminum alloy due to friction stir welding (FSW) and gas tungsten arc welding (GTAW) was investigated by optical metallography, scanning electron microscopy, microhardness measurement, X-ray diffraction, tensile testing, and fractography. The center-line dendrite emergence and microhardness reduction in the heat-affected zone were observed in the GTAW process. Although similar microhardness reduction with respect to the base metal was observed in the FSW samples, higher HVs were obtained for the FSW rather than the GTAW process at almost all heat-affected locations. Ultimate tensile strengths of the FSW and the GTAW samples in the transverse direction were ~0.57 and ~0.35 of the base metal, respectively. Post-weld aging improved the strength, but reduced the ductility of the welding.

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The authors would like to thank Mr. S.H. Sonbolestan (MSc student in the Sharif University of Technology) and Mr. M.H. Tahmasebi (PhD candidate in the Isfahan University of Technology) for their help in running the tests and the Sharif University of Technology and Isfahan University of Technology for allowing research work to be conducted in their laboratories.

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Correspondence to S. K. Sadrnezhaad.

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Manuscript submitted June 20, 2012.

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Fahimpour, V., Sadrnezhaad, S.K. & Karimzadeh, F. Microstructure and Mechanical Property Change During FSW and GTAW of Al6061 Alloy. Metall Mater Trans A 44, 2187–2195 (2013).

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  • Welding
  • Base Metal
  • Friction Stir Welding
  • Friction Stir Welding
  • Friction Stir Welding Process