Simulation of non-nominal welds by resolving the melted zone and its implication to variation simulation

S. Lorin, C. Cromvik, F. Edelvik, L. Lindkvist, R. Söderberg, K. Wärmefjord. Proceedings of the ASME 2014 IDETC/CIE, Buffalo, New York, USA, August 17-20, 2014.


The prediction of geometric variation and its consequences is one important aspect of product development. For welded assemblies it has been shown that positioning errors of the parts prior to welding affects the weld-induced distortion. Therefore, to accurately predict geometric variation in welded assemblies, variation simulation and welding simulation need to be performed in combination. This is usually a very time consuming task, and therefore, the relatively fast SCV-method is utilized. This method is used to calculate welding distortion when positioning errors are present and it consists of the following three steps: 1) a steady state computation of the thermal distribution during welding, 2) the melted zone along the full joint is encapsulated by sweeping a two-dimensional convex hull along the weld gun path, and 3) a uniform temperature is applied to all nodes inside this zone. The two-dimensional convex hull is computed so that when swept along the weld path, it will encapsulate the melted zone from the steady state temperature computation. The weld-induced distortion is obtained from the elastic volumetric shrinkage. In this article the focus is on the first step in this method; the temperature distribution computation. The positioning error can cause the connecting parts to have varying distances to each other at the joint, which cause the melted region to vary along the weld path. Therefore, it is not sufficient to capture the steady state temperature distribution at only one location. Depending on the geometry surrounding the weld path, several locations may be needed. In this new approach, the two-dimensional convex hull that is to be swept along the weld path, can vary along the weld path, and is computed from an interpolation of the multiple two-dimensional convex hulls obtained from the multiple steady state temperature computations. A comparison of the melted region using transient temperature calculation, a single steady state temperature calculation and this new approach has been made. Furthermore, the implication on distortion calculation has been studied.

Keywords: variation simulation, welding simulation, volumetric shrinkage.


This work is part of the ProViking project Variation Simulation for Light Weight Assemblies, financed by Swedish Foundation for Strategic Research carried out as a part of the Wingquist Laboratory VINN Excellence Centre research program and Chalmers Production Area of Advance. The support is greatly acknowledged.

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. Lorin, Department of Product and Production Development, Chalmers University of Technology
  • C. Cromvik, Fraunhofer-Chalmers Centre for Industrial Mathematics
  • F. Edelvik, Fraunhofer-Chalmers Centre for Industrial Mathematics
  • L. Lindkvist, Department of Product and Production Development, Chalmers University of Technology
  • R. Söderberg, Department of Product and Production Development, Chalmers University of Technology
  • K. Wärmefjord, Department of Product and Production Development, Chalmers University of Technology

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