Procedural influences on non-linear distortions in welded thin-plate fabrication

P. Mollicone, D. Camilleri, T.G.F. Gray

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Fusion welding is the most common and convenient method used for the fabrication of large, thin-plate welded structures. However, the resulting tendency to out-of-plane distortion exacts severe design and fabrication penalties in terms of poorer buckling performance, lack of fairness in external appearance, poor fit-up and frequent requirements for expensive rework. This study forms part of a long-term project that has the aim of modelling welding and related fabrication processes computationally with particular emphasis on the out-of-plane distortion outcomes. Throughout the present work the computational models have been cross-referenced to realistic experimental test cases. A repeated finding of the trials was that minor variations in fabrication procedures, were found to have significant effects on distortion. In particular, the pre-fabrication procedures, including spot and tack welding, have a significant effect on the initial out-of-plane distortion leading to differences in distortion of the post-welded structures. The support and clamping conditions during welding and cooling of welded thin-plate structures were also found to have a considerable influence on the final predicted out-of-plane distortion. The outcomes often result in different buckling instability behaviour. This paper concentrates on these aspects and draws on studies of buttwelding between plates of thicknesses 3-8 mm.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1021-1034
Number of pages13
JournalThin-Walled Structures
Volume46
Issue number7-9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2008

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Keywords

  • welding distortion
  • out-of-plane deformation
  • computational models
  • experimental tests
  • pre-fabrication procedures
  • support and clamping conditions
  • mechanical engineering

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