The UCLA team has developed a new welding wire that can weld 7075 aluminum-Repairer Driven NewsRepairer Driven News

2021-11-11 08:57:57 By : Ms. Alice zhao

A team at the University of California, Los Angeles developed a method of welding 7075 aluminum alloy by injecting titanium carbide nanoparticles into a welding wire.

The breakthrough in welding alloys—something UCLA previously called “almost impossible”—can make this metal more practical for OEMs to redesign vehicles and provide new capabilities for the aftermarket.

UCLA professor Li Xiaochun said in a statement: “This new technology is just a simple turning point, but it allows this high-strength aluminum alloy to be widely used in mass-produced products such as cars or bicycles. Parts are often assembled together." "Companies can use the same processes and equipment they already have to incorporate this super-strong aluminum alloy into their manufacturing process, and their products can be lighter and more energy efficient while still maintaining their strength."

Li participated in the project with the lead author of the study and graduate student Maximilian Sokoluk; the most recent University of California, Los Angeles Ph.D. Cao Chezheng; and graduate student Pan Shuaihang.

Li said in an interview on Monday that the wire is ready for commercialization. He said that since the announcement of the method, he has received interest from various companies every day.

"This is great," he said. Ironically, he said, this is not even his main field of research.

Li said that the welding process only used a typical aluminum welder and an ordinary operator for welding. (His team’s paper on Nature Communications describes the use of gas tungsten arc welding.) This shows that UCLA’s technology-published in Nature Communications on January 9 and announced by the University of California, Los Angeles on January 25- Will apply to the automotive aftermarket.

Li also stated that the process can be used to weld alloys from the 6000 series to the 2000 series. However, he pointed out that 4000 and 5000 alloys are already quite easy to weld.

"Researchers are already working with a bicycle manufacturer to develop a bicycle frame prototype using this alloy; new research shows that filler wire injected with nanoparticles can also more easily connect other difficult-to-weld metals and metal alloys," the University of California The Los Angeles campus wrote in a press conference.

The University of California, Los Angeles stated that 7075 is "sturdy and light"-only one-third the weight of steel, but almost equal in strength-thereby improving fuel/cell efficiency. It is used in aircraft wings and fuselages. It can also be found on objects that do not need to be connected to metal.

The University of California, Los Angeles wrote in a press release: "(When) the alloy is heated during the welding process, its molecular structure will cause its constituent elements-aluminum, zinc, magnesium and copper-to flow unevenly. This leads to cracks along the weld." "...The welding resistance of (T) alloys, especially the type of welding used in automobile manufacturing, prevents it from being widely adopted."

According to the University of California, Los Angeles, the nano-particles of the wire are measured in billionths of a meter, allowing welders to connect 7075 aluminum with a tensile strength of up to 392 MPa. The college wrote that the common 6061 automotive alloy has a tensile strength of 186 MPa when welded.

According to the University of California, Los Angeles, heat treatment after welding was found to increase the joint to 551 MPa, with the same tensile strength as steel.

"Nanotechnology enables engineers to weld aluminum alloys that could not be welded before"

University of California, Los Angeles, Samueli School of Engineering, January 25, 2019

"Nanoparticle phase control for arc welding of non-weldable aluminum alloy 7075"

Maximilian Sokoluk, Chezheng Cao, Shuaihang Pan, and Xiaochun Li, Nature Communications, January 9, 2019

A team at the University of California, Los Angeles has found a way to weld 7075 aluminum alloy by using a wire with nanoparticles. (Provided by University of California, Los Angeles)

From left: University of California, Los Angeles graduate student Maximilian Sokoluk, laboratory mechanic Travis Widick and Professor Li Xiaochun group photo. Widick holds a bicycle frame welded with new 7075 aluminum welding wire. (Provided by University of California, Los Angeles)

© 2020 DRIVEN COMMUNICATIONS Inc. All rights reserved.