The effect of excimer laser surface treatment on the pitting corrosion fatigue behaviour of aluminium alloy 7075

C. P. Chan, Tai Man Yue, Hau Chung Man

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An excimer laser (KrF) operating at a wavelength of 248 nm was used to modify the surface microstructure of 7075-T651 aluminium alloy. The aim was to improve both the corrosion resistance and the pitting corrosion fatigue resistance of the alloy by means of laser surface melting (LSM). The microstructure and the phases of the modified surface structure were analysed, and the corrosion behaviour of the untreated and the laser-treated specimens were evaluated by immersion test The fatigue resistance of the 7075 alloy has been presented in the form of S/N curves. A microscopical examination and the transmission electron microscopy (TEM) study revealed that LSM caused a reduction both in number and size of constituent particles and a refinement of the grain structure within the laser melted zone. As a result, the corrosion resistance of the aluminium alloy was improved. There was a significant reduction in the number of corrosion pits and shallow attack occurred. The fatigue test results showed that under dry fatigue conditions, the total fatigue life of the laser treated specimens, in which the crack initiation period is of considerable significance, was lower than that of the untreated specimens. However, after shot peening, the fatigue life of the laser treated specimens was recovered. This was primarily attributed to the elimination of surface defects, but also be in part, due to the introduction of compressive residual stresses in the surface layer of the specimen. The fatigue resistance of the shot peened laser-treated specimens, tested in 3.5 wt% NaCl solution with 48 hrs prior immersion, was greater than the untreated specimens with an increase of two orders of magnitude in fatigue life. This was primarily due to the elimination of surface defects and the reduction of corrosion pits.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2689-2702
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Materials Science
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jul 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering

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