Durability Assessment of Thin Sheet Spot Welded Joints 990044
One of the primary concern during assessment of structural integrity of vehicle bodies is the quality of joints used therein. The increased trend in vehicle weight reduction (through use of thin sheet panels) calls for more critical evaluation of the quality of such joints. The electric Resistance Spot Welding (RSW) is one of the largely used joining process for vehicle body structure.
Besides the quality of sheet metal, the quality of RSW joints is largely governed by the process parameters e.g. weld current, hold time, squeeze time etc. The quality of RSW joints for durability can be assessed by mechanical strength and fatigue life.
The paper presents a methodology for durability assessment of such joints using laboratory specimens and arriving at optimum values of process parameters to maximise the fatigue life. The methodology presented makes extensive use of Design of Experiment (DOE) techniques for better reliability of the results. The application of the methodology is described with an exercise on a typical 1 mm thick steel sheet metal specimens. Also an attempt is made to correlate the mechanical and fatigue strength with other parameters like hardness and residual stresses on and around the RSW joints.