Inter-relationship between microstructure evolution and mechanical properties in inertia friction welded 8630 low-alloy steel

Banerjee, Amborish and Ntovas, Michail and Da Silva, Laurie and Rahimi, Salah and Wynne, Bradley (2021) Inter-relationship between microstructure evolution and mechanical properties in inertia friction welded 8630 low-alloy steel. Archives of Civil and Mechanical Engineering, 21 (4). 149. ISSN 1644-9665 (

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The evolution of microstructure and mechanical properties in AISI 8630 low-alloy steel subjected to inertia friction welding (IFW) have been investigated. The effects of three critical process parameters, viz. rotational speed, friction and forge forces, during welding of tubular specimens were explored. The mechanical properties of these weld joints, including tensile and Charpy V-notch impact were studied for determining the optimum welding parameters. The weld joints exhibited higher yield strength, lower hardening capacity and ultimate tensile strength compared to base metal (BM). The maximum strength and ductility combination was achieved for the welds produced under a nominal weld speed of ~ 2900–3100 rpm, the highest friction force of ~ 680–720 kN, and the lowest axial forging load of ~ 560–600 kN. The measured hardness distribution depicted higher values for the weld zone (WZ) compared to the thermo-mechanically affected zone (TMAZ), heat-affected zone (HAZ) and BM, irrespective of the applied welding parameters. The substantial increase in the hardness of the WZ is due to the formation of microstructures that were dominated by martensite. The observed microstructural features, i.e. the fractions of martensite, bainite and ferrite, show that the temperature in the WZ and TMAZ was above Ac 3, whereas that of the HAZ was below Ac 1 during the IFW. The fracture surface of the tensile and impact-tested specimens exhibited the presence of dimples nucleating from the voids, thus indicating a ductile failure. EBSD maps of the WZ revealed the formation of subgrains inside the prior austenite grains, indicating the occurrence of continuous dynamic recrystallisation during the weld. Analysis of crystallographic texture indicated that the austenite microstructure (i.e. FCC) in both the WZ and TMAZ undergoes simple shear deformation during IFW.