Effects of microstructure and local mechanical fields on intergranular stress corrosion cracking of a friction stir welded aluminum–copper–lithium 2050 nugget
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The effects of the microstructure and mechanical fields on intergranular stress corrosion cracking (IGSCC) of the nugget zone of heat treated welds obtained by friction stir welding in the AA2050 aluminum alloy have been investigated at different scales. At low strain rate, in 1.0 NaCl aqueous solution, IGSCC develops in the microstructure, whereas only pitting corrosion is observed without any mechanical stress. Based on surface observations, EBSD analysis and X-ray tomography, the key role of sub-millimetric textured bands (induced by the welding process) on the IGSCC is demonstrated. Analyses at a more local scale show the grain boundary (low angle boundary, special coincident site lattice boundary or high angle boundary) do not have a significant effect on crack initiation. Crystal plasticity finite element calculations show that the threshold normal stress at grain boundaries for IGSCC development is about 80% of the macroscopic stress. It is also highlighted by crystal plasticity calculations that there is a drastic effect of the local stress field on the shape of cracks. Finally, it is shown that plasticity induced residual stresses are sufficient for the formation of IGSCC. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.
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