Influence of the cooling time on the microstructural evolution and mechanical performance of a double pulse resistance spot welded Medium-Mn steel
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- voestalpine Stahl Linz GmbH
In the present work, the influence of the cooling time on the mechanical performance, hardness, and microstructural features of a double pulse resistance spot welded medium-Mn steel are investigated. Curves of the electrical resistance throughout the welding revealed that the cooling time strongly influences the heat generation during the second pulse. A second pulse after a short cooling time re-melts the center, and heat treats the edge of the primary fusion zone. This desired in-process heat treatment leads to a modification of the cast-like martensitic structure by recrystallization illustrated by electron backscatter diffraction measurements and to a homogenization of manganese segregations, visualized by energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, which results in an enhanced mechanical performance during the cross tension strength test. In contrast, during excessively long cooling times, the resistance drops to a level where the heat generation due to the second pulse is too low to sufficiently re-heat the edge of the primary FZ. As a consequence, the signs of recrystallization disappear, and the manganese segregations are still present at the edge of the fusion zone, which leads to a deterioration of the mechanical properties.