Weld Pool Simulations
Abstract: This investigation is devoted to the study of welding and its effect on the workpiece, focusing on the thermo and fluid dynamical phenomena occuring during a autogenous or nonautogenous arc fusion welding process. Its aim is to simulate the behaviour of the weld pool and analyze the consequence of the solid-liquid phase change, thus obtaining a methodology for predicting the appearance of weld defects related to solidification and cooling. In order to accomplish this, we solve equations governing a number of continuum mechanical and electromagnetical quantities, as well as consider the motion of the freely moving boundary of the weld pool. Since the state of these quantities is strongly influenced by phenomena such as arc and droplet impingement, non-isothermal phase change, surface tension, Marangoni forces and Lorentz forces, much effort is necessarily devoted to the modelling of the corresponding fluxes and sources, as well as to the implementation of computationally efficient techniques for simulating the geometrical deformation of the workpiece, which in our setting is entirely determined by the motion of the weld pool surface.Common to all arc fusion welding processes is the employment of a welding arc. Many techniques rely on the arc to clean and shield the workpiece during the process, however in this study we consider it to be its main purpose to cause the local increase of thermal energy that is required for the establishment of the weld pool, and also to exert the mechanical forces that provoke the subsequent fluid flow which enhances heat transfer and facilitates weld penetration. The physics of the welding arc itself is quite intricate, and although the modelling of the arc is not the prime objective of this research project, we conclude that arc forces act on the pool surface, and that the investigation of the arc behaviour is important insofar that it provides input to the pool model and thus enables a more accurate prediction of the quality of the weldment that is created once the pool has solidified.
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