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Research and Development (R&D) Project Sites

Project Information
Project ID:   FHWA-PROJ-11-0002
Project Name:   Efficacy of Solid-State Welding for Bridge Fabrication
Project Status:   Completed
Start Date:  January 1, 2011
End Date:  August 1, 2013
Contact Information
Last Name:  Ocel
First Name:  Justin
Telephone:  202-493-3080
E-mail:  justin.ocel@dot.gov
Office:   Office of Infrastructure Research and Development
Team:   Bridge and Foundation Engineering Team [HRDI-40]
Program:   High-Performing Steel Bridge
Project detail
Roadmap/Focus area(s):   Infrastructure Research and Technology Strategic Plan and Roadmap
Project Description:   This project will consider the efficacy of using the following welding processes:  (1) High frequency.(2) Friction stir.(3) Thermal stir.(4) Hybrid high frequency/friction stir, between ferric steels commonly used in steel bridge fabrication.  The project will specifically focus on solid-state welding of the three grades of high-performing steels. Depending on the results attained, the project may expand in scope.
Goals:   Determine if solid-state welding practices are feasible for use with typical ferric materials used in steel bridge fabrication.
Background Information:   Partial or full-penetration submerged arc welding (SAW) in T-joints have been the workhorse fusion weld used in steel bridge fabrication for decades. Additionally, shielded metal arc welding (SMAW), gas metal arc welding (GMAW), and flux-cored arc welding (FCAW) are also used. Emerging high productivity technologies, such as hybrid laser/GMAW welding, were also introduced to improve weld quality, productivity, and weld properties, and to reduce residual stresses. However, all these are fusion welding processes, where consumables are melted and resolidified as a weld deposit. These processes inherently have a potential for creating weld discontinuities, such as solidification cracking or gas/slag entrapment. On the other hand, the solid-state welding processes are the direct fusion between two different base metals. Some solid-state welding processes have become standard in the oil/gas, aerospace, and automotive industries, although they typically have employed metals other than ferric steels.
Test Methodology:   Experimental
Expected Benefits:   Higher productivity and reliable steel bridge fabrication.
FHWA Topics:   Roads and Bridges--Structures
TRT Terms:   Welding
Steel Bridges
Submerged Arc Welding
Gas Metal Arc Welding
FHWA Disciplines:   Structures
Subject Areas:   Bridges and other structures


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