Study on the role of recondensation flux in high power laser welding by computational fluid dynamics simulations
Partial penetration welding with fiber laser on 20 mm thick plates was carried out in horizontal position to study the role of secondary heating in modeling of high power fiber laser welding. Experiments were carried out using 18.8 kW laser with 1.5 m/min welding speed at Ar assist gas flow rates of 0, 17, 29, and 40 l/min, all four cases show similar bead shape with bright emission of vapor plume. Numerical simulations were performed using volume of fluid method by considering three different models as models A-C. Model A considers only Fresnel reflection inside the keyhole using real time tracking of free surface. Model B considers vapor recondensation flux inside keyhole along with model A. Finally, model C is used, which considers vapor plume heating at 4100 K temperature along with models A B. Secondary heating by recondensation and vapor plume is vital in modeling of high power fiber laser welding; especially, the upper part of the bead is more influenced due to secondary heating. Tungsten particles are also used to visualize the flow pattern of melt pool.