The weldability of high-strength steels (HSSs) is limited by their loss of strength, toughness and fatigue properties. In demanding applications, the fatigue properties of welds are among the strictest requirements. This paper presents a weldability analysis focusing on the microstructure and fatigue properties of 6 mm thick S690 and S355 HSS plates joined by friction stir welding. Their fatigue properties are compared to design recommendations and to fatigue properties obtained with other welding techniques. Results show that the high-quality friction stir welded steel joints outperform high-quality arc welds and FAT80 design recommendations. The fatigue strength of the friction stir welded joints is increased with material yield strength. The mechanisms governing crack initiation at different maximum stress levels are discussed.
- Friction stir welding
- high-strength steel