Hybrid manufacturing approach for landing gear applications : WAAM Ti–6Al–4V on forged Ti–5Al–5Mo–5V–3Cr

Hicks, Calum and Tamimi, Saeed and Sivaswamy, Giribaskar and Pimentel, Misael and Mckegney, Scott and Fitzpatrick, Stephen (2024) Hybrid manufacturing approach for landing gear applications : WAAM Ti–6Al–4V on forged Ti–5Al–5Mo–5V–3Cr. Journal of Materials Research and Technology, 30. pp. 6596-6608. ISSN 2238-7854 (https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jmrt.2024.05.088)

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High-strength metastable β-titanium alloys like Ti-5553 (Ti–5Al–5Mo–5V–3Cr) are frequently used in highly loaded aerospace components. Such aerospace parts tend to be expensive to traditionally manufacture due to current industry process limitations such as inflexibility for complex geometries, costs related to tooling for large forgings, extended lead times, poor machinability and high material waste. These challenges are leading to increased interest in exploring alternative manufacturing routes. This work investigates the use of additive manufacturing to deposit cost-effective and machinable Ti-64 (Ti–6Al–4V) alloy onto a forged Ti-5553 alloy substrate. The microstructure evolution, microhardness and tensile properties have been investigated for both the as-deposited as well as for stress relief heat-treated conditions. The results confirmed the formation of coarse columnar β grains with a fine basketweave α structure. The heat affected zones (HAZs) developed in the Ti-5553 substrate material from the cyclic thermal fluxes introduced from the melt-pool were characterized by a gradient microstructure of dissolving constituent phases with nearing proximity to the fusion zone. Tensile testing in the as-deposited condition was characterised with a UTS of 884 MPa and a ductility of 15%. Tensile samples extracted across the substrate-deposit interface all failed in the WAAM Ti-64 material and demonstrated comparatively greater strength but poorer ductility. A band of tensile residual stresses was imparted along the substrate, but was adequately stress relieved after heat-treatment at 600 °C. The heat-treatment led to the formation of more homogeneous α-phase laths throughout the HAZ of the Ti-5553 material and provided overall improvements to the strength and ductility.