Three-dimensional simulations of resistance spot welding

Chris Valentin Nielsen, Wenqi Zhang, William Perret, Paulo A.F. Martins, Niels Bay

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This paper draws from the fundamentals of electro-thermo-mechanical coupling to the main aspects of finite element implementation and three-dimensional modelling of resistance welding. A new simulation environment is proposed in order to perform three-dimensional simulations and optimization of resistance welding together with the simulations of conventional and special-purpose quasi-static mechanical tests. Three-dimensional simulations of resistance welding consider the electrical, thermal, mechanical and metallurgical characteristics of the material as well as the operating conditions of the welding machines. Simulations of the mechanical tests take into account material softening due to the accumulation of ductile damage and cover conventional tests, such as tensile–shear tests, cross-tension test and peel tests, as well as the possibility of special-purpose tests designed by the users. The overall presentation is supported by numerical simulations of electrode misalignment caused by the flexibility of the welding machine arms and electrical shunting due to consecutive welds in the resistance spot welding of two sheets.
Original languageEnglish
JournalProceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part D: Journal of Automobile Engineering
Issue number7
Pages (from-to)885-897
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • Resistance welding
  • Electrode misalignment
  • Electrical shunting
  • Mechanical testing
  • Numerical simulations
  • Finite element method


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