Do you know how electric battery casings are assemblied? Which technology allows major savings in aeronautics by replacing riveting? What is it now possible to weld casted aluminum and dissimilar material?
The FSW is used today in aeronautics, automotive, space, rail and navy (welding standard: ISO 25239).
FSW results in :
No material input, no surface preparation, low energy consumption, reduction of post-welding inspection…
Fewer consumables (1 tool = welding of 1500-m long).
Manufacturing of cheaper and lighter products
Thanks to the reduction of raw material.
Innovation in multi-material assembly
For example, FSW copper welding on aluminum or aluminium on steel.
Diversification of your process offer at a lower cost
A new function is added to your CNC machine for the price of a FSW head, instead of buying a complete and dedicated machine.
Solution to the lack of qualified welders
The process is very simple and machinists get it in a two-days training.
Stirweld provides the training of your manufacturers.
Assembly of aluminum profiles for rigid panel manufacturing
Why use FSW to assembly aluminium profiles to form rigid panels?
-Thinner and wider panels : aluminium profiles are generally smaller than 400-mm wide, FSW overcomes this limits by butt welding.
-One manufacturing step : no part preparation, no degreasing, no machining after welding
-Lighter and more rigid panels : profile optimization associated to FSW limits the useless shapes.
-Quality : the weld is perfectly sealed and the mechanical strengths are close to those of the base material.
-Maturity : this technology is already used in automotive (battery casing), rail (car blank), aeronautics and naval (floor).
The two FSW welds located in the center of each of two profiles are lap welds.
The FSW weld in the center of the part is a butt weld.
Reduction of raw material
Many mechanical parts are machined from a massive block of aluminium where up to 90% of material is removed. Many companies would like to reduce their cost of raw material and their machining time.
The solution : part welding by FSW in order to get a preform as close as possible to the final shape.
Examples of application sectors : aeronautics, military, nuclear, space.
Frame made with aluminum profiles and FSW .
Detail of a frame corner weld (before final machining to eliminate entry and exit taps)
Welding of casted parts
Aluminium casted parts are difficult or not weldable with conventional processes (degassing of casted aluminium).
The solution :
FSW allows the welding of aluminium castings, even die casted pieces, due to the solid state.
Examples of application sectors :
Electronic box : the gains in mass are optimized without altering the mechanical characteristics.
Alloy wheels, battery boxes and heat exchangers are soldered by FSW.
The cooling fins are welded to an electronic box.
Two FSW welds provide thermal conductivity.
FSW of more complex components not castable:
Combining FSW and Rheocasting results in very high-performance parts even with complex designs and sizes, while optimizing mechanical properties.
Welding two small parts resulting in a large complex part thermally conductive.
Examples of application sectors:
Telecommunication (5G), automotive, military, naval, space, aeronautics.
FSW of two rheocasted parts.
FSW of two rheocasted parts.
Replacement of traditional assemblies
(riveting, MIG, bonding)
The most resistant aluminum alloys are not weldable with conventional technologies because of their chemical composition (2000 and 7000 series). These alloys are currently assembled by screwing, sticking or riveting.
Many companies would like to replace these processes to reduce manufacturing costs while increasing the mechanical strength of assemblies.
The solution : FSW results in fast and high strenght assembly of all aluminum alloys.
Examples of application sectors : aerospace, civil engineering (bridges). FSW is one of the most significant advances in manufacturing of NASA Space shuttle tanks, as well as in Ariane and Space X rockets.
Discover the application of FSW technology in the hydrogen cryogenic tank: a forward-looking concept for aeronautics.
Replacement riveting by FSW welding for the mixed application 2024-T3 and 7075-T6
Replacement of spot welding
Conventional resistance welding requires a finishing operation for ornamental applications. This operation is time-consuming and tedious requiring qualified operators.
The solution : FSW by lap welding results in no-affected back side and eliminates grinding.
Examples of application sectors : sheet jobshop, aeronautics.
Replacement of resistance welding with FSW spot welding.
Welding of copper components
FSW replaces resistance welding or brazing by improving the junction quality, by reducing the manufacturing cost (no electrode wear) and by increasing the mechanical resistance.
Exemple of application sector : energy.
FSW spot welding of a tinned copper connector on a copper cable.
Welding of brass components
FSW reduces the machining volume of brass components in order to reduce their cost. Moreover, FSW can replace brazing by improving the junction quality and by increasing the mechanical resistance.
Example of application sector: ornamental or nautical parts.
Example of 4-mm butt welds (brass : CW614N, forging of 5 kN).
Replacement of copper by aluminium (welding Cu / Al)
FSW allows a metallurgical junction between copper and aluminium limiting electrical resistivity.
Example of application sector : energy.
FSW copper welding on aluminum.
Welding of aluminium components on steel
Lower cost & faster – replacement of screwing and one manufacturing step
High mechanical resistance – mainly fatigue improvement
Example of application sector: already used in automotive applications.
Example of Al-Fe welding (with the bending test).
Welding of aluminium components on steel: automotive
Welded steel-aluminum engine cradle – Honda Accord 2013
Manufacture of Taylor Welded Blanks
FSW has several advantages compared to the traditional welding process: MIG. Friction Stir Welding assures a quality weld with no porosity, a good penetration, no cracking or sticking. Once welded, the part is formed to obtain a concave shape thanks to flow forming process. The FSW weld resists the pressure of the flow forming process without any loss of quality.
Do you want to know more?
Download the white paper on FSW applications