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Accepted Manuscript

Title: Inuence of process variables on weld bead quality in


two wire tandem submerged arc welding of HSLA steel
Authors: D.V. Kiran, B. Basu, A. De
PII: S0924-0136(12)00154-9
DOI: doi:10.1016/j.jmatprotec.2012.05.008
Reference: PROTEC 13422
To appear in: Journal of Materials Processing Technology
Received date: 9-1-2012
Revised date: 30-4-2012
Accepted date: 14-5-2012
Please cite this article as: Kiran, D.V., Basu, B., De, A., Inuence of process variables on
weld bead quality in two wire tandem submerged arc welding of HSLA steel, Journal
of Materials Processing Technology (2010), doi:10.1016/j.jmatprotec.2012.05.008
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Influence of process variables on weld bead quality in two wire
tandem submerged arc welding of HSLA steel

D. V. Kiran
1
, B. Basu
2
and A. De
1

1
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Bombay
2
Naval Metallurgical Research Laboratory, Ambernath, Thane, Mumbai
E-mail: amit@iitb.ac.in

ABSTRACT
Two-wire tandem submerged arc welding process involves simultaneous depositions from
two electrode wires with the leading wire usually connected to a DC power source and the trailing
wire connected to a pulsed AC power source. The weld bead profile and mechanical properties in
the tandem submerged welding are significantly affected by the leading and trailing wire current
transients and the welding speed. We present here a detailed experimental study on the influence of
leading wire current, trailing wire current pulses, and welding speed on the weld bead dimensions
and mechanical properties in single-pass tandem submerged welding of a typical HSLA steel. It is
realized that the weld bead penetration is primarily influenced by the leading wire current while the
weld bead width and the reinforcement height are sensitive to the trailing wire current pulses.
Greater magnitude of trailing wire current pulses and shorter negative pulse duration increase the
weld pool volume leading to reduced cooling rate and poor mechanical properties as the formation
of the strengthening phases like acicular ferrite is inhibited. In contrast, increase in welding speed
reduces the rate of heat input thereby enhancing the cooling rate and the weld bead mechanical
properties. A set of empirical relations are developed to estimate the weld bead dimensions and
mechanical properties as function of the welding conditions. The predictions from the empirical
relations and the corresponding measured results are observed to be in fair agreement.

Highlights
Two-wire DC-AC tandem submerged arc welding process is evaluated for single-pass joining of
thick HSLA steel. The extensive effects of the trailing wire current waveform on the weld joint
quality are evaluated. A set of empirical equations are presented to estimate weld bead dimensions
and mechanical properties as function of five significant welding conditions.

Keywords : Tandem Submerged Arc Welding, HSLA Steel, Experimental Investigation, Central
Composite Rotatable Design.
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INTRODUCTION
Submerged arc welding (SAW) process facilitates high deposition rate and excellent weld
joint quality, and finds wide application in the fabrication of pressure vessels, pipelines and offshore
structures (Almqvist et al., 1978). Joining of medium to high thickness plates usually needs multi-
pass SAW that requires intermediate cleaning of the joint and selection of appropriate interpass
temperature to ensure good weld joint quality (Uttrachi, 1978; Farhat, 2007). The two-wire tandem
submerged arc welding (SAW-T) process provides simultaneous deposition from two electrodes
one electrode leading the other in the direction of welding into a single weld puddle resulting
higher deposition rate in comparison to the single wire conventional SAW process (Uttrachi, 1978;
Viano et al., 2000). The leading and the trailing electrode wires in SAW-T process are connected
respectively to a DC and a pulsed AC power supply that necessitates an appropriate selection of a
large number of welding conditions. These welding conditions include the leading wire current, the
trailing wire positive and negative current pulses and the corresponding pulse durations, welding
speed, and the distance between the two electrode wires in comparison to only current, voltage and
welding speed in the conventional SAW process (Konkol and Koons, 1978; Farhat, 2007; Viano et
al., 2000; Pilipenko, 2001). A quantitative investigation on the effects of these welding conditions
on the weld bead quality is critically needed for the successful application of the SAW-T process.
Investigations on SAW-T process are rare in open literature although several researchers
have used the conventional SAW process for the joining of medium to heavy thickness plates.
Renwick and Patchett (1976) carried out bead-on-plate welding of 38 mm thick BS 4360 grade 43A
mild steel plates using conventional SAW process and reported a direct influence of welding current
on the weld bead dimensions. Gunaraj and Murugan (1999) presented a set of empirical relations to
estimate the weld bead dimensions as function of welding conditions in conventional SAW of 6 mm
thick IS 2062 carbon steel pipes. Gowrisankar et al. (1987) observed that the impact toughness of
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weld deposit would reduce significantly with the increase in number of intermediate passes during
SAW of 25 mm thick 316L stainless steel plates. Prasad and Dwivedi (2008) observed a marked
reduction in the ultimate tensile strength of weld metal with increase in the rate of heat input during
SAW of 16 mm thick steels (ASTM A384, grade 11). Uttrachi and Messina (1968) could use a
significantly higher welding speed in single-pass SAW-T of 10 mm thick steel plates in comparison
to the conventional SAW process. Konkol and Koons (1978) observed a smaller weld penetration at
lower welding current and shorter electrode extension in SAW-T of 16.5 mm thick steel plates.
Moeinifar et al. (2011) simulated typical four-wire SAW process of X80 microalloyed steel using a
Gleeble apparatus and observed that the hardness in the coarse grained heat affected zone increased
with the cooling rate. Shen et al. (2012) reported that weld and HAZ dimensions would increase
with the rate of heat input in SAW and SAW-T of 20 mm thick ASTM A709 Grade 50 steel. In
typical tandem pulsed gas metal arc welding process, Uyema et al. (2005) highlighted the need to
optimize the electrode inclination angles in the direction of welding to avoid undercut and humped
weld profiles especially at higher welding currents. Viano et al. (2000) could enhance the weld joint
impact toughness at reduced rate of heat input in SAW-T of 20 mm thick HSLA 80 steel. Kiran et
al. (2010) reported a three-dimensional heat transfer analysis of two-wire SAW-T process and
correlated the computed cooling rate, T
8/5
(from 800 to 500
0
C), in the weld pool with the measured
volume fraction of ferrite phases in the final weld bead at several welding conditions.
In summary, a systematic experimental study on the individual effects of the key welding
conditions on the weld bead dimensions and mechanical properties in two-wire SAW-T process is
not yet readily available in open literature. The authors present here a detailed experimental
investigation on the effect of five significant welding conditions on the weld bead quality in single-
pass SAW-T process of a typical HSLA steel. These welding conditions include leading arc current,
trailing arc positive and negative current pulses, trailing arc negative current pulse duration and
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welding speed. Bead-on-groove single-pass SAW-T experiments are performed on 12 mm thick
HSLA steel plates at various parametric combinations which are decided following the principle of
central composite rotatable design. A set of empirical models are developed to estimate the weld
bead qualities as function of the significant welding conditions. The exclusive effects of each of the
five significant welding conditions on the weld bead quality are studied and presented subsequently.
EXPERIMENTAL INVESTIGATION
Table 1 outlines the chemical compositions of the base plate and the electrode wire used in
the present study. The chemical composition of the base plate confirms to a typical HSLA steel with
the yield strength, ultimate tensile strength and percent elongation measured at room temperature as
497 MPa, 662 MPa and 27.9%, respectively. Table 1 also depicts the chemical composition of the
weld bead at five different welding conditions. Fig. 1 schematically shows the workpiece and the
orientation of the leading and trailing electrodes as used during the SAW-T experiments. Three
longitudinal grooves (45
0
) are made in each sample plate at equal transverse distance to prepare the
sample bead-on-groove welds. The leading and trailing electrode diameters confirm to 3.15 and 4.0
mm, respectively. The distance between two electrode wires is kept constant at 20 mm for all the
welding runs. The leading and the trailing electrode wire extensions (stick out) are kept at 25 and 35
mm, respectively. Table 2 depicts the independent process variables and their ranges that are
considered in the present study. Fifty different parametric combinations are decided based on a two
level, five factorial, central composite rotatable design (Montgomery, 2001) with additional
experiments at the axial points and repetitions at the central points. The total number of parametric
combinations includes 2
5
(=32) factorial, 5 2 (=10) axial (uppermost and lowermost levels) and 8
centre (0 level) points. Each welding condition is considered in a non-dimensional form as
(Montgomery, 2001)
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) (
)] ( [2 2.3784
MIN MAX
MIN MAX
X X
X + X X
= X
i


(1)
where
MAX
X ,
MIN
X and
i
X refer to the maximum, minimum and coded values of a specific
condition ,respectively.
Table 1
Chemical composition (Wt %) of the base plate, electrode wire and weld metal.
Element C Mn Si Cr Ni Cu V Al Mo
Base plate 0.048 1.583 0.412 0.623 0.642 0.023 0.026 0.047 0.148
Electrode 0.02 - 0.06 1.0 - 1.5 0.1 - 0.3 < 0.1 2.2 - 2.8 < 0.05 < 0.01 0.01-0.02 < 0.1
Weld Bead
8
0.037 1.449 0.373 0.597 1.172 0.078 0.023 0.025 0.148
Weld Bead
24
0.055 1.452 0.420 0.460 1.154 0.077 0.020 0.028 0.106
Weld Bead
41
0.036 1.383 0.373 0.610 1.267 0.109 0.020 0.034 0.174
Weld Bead
42
0.045 1.432 0.370 0.584 1.106 0.072 0.022 0.032 0.151
Weld Bead
43
0.036 1.417 0.377 0.585 1.160 0.088 0.019 0.032 0.154
*The superscripts on Weld Bead refers to the set number from table A-I.











Fig. 1. Schematic representation of the dimensions of the base plate.


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Table 2
Process variables and their limits.
Factor levels
Parameters Notation
2.3784 1 0 1 2.3784
Leading arc current
LE
I (A) 300 384 445 506 590
Peak +ve current
pulse in trailing arc
+
TR
I (A) 319 343 360 377 401
Peak ve current
pulse in trailing arc

TR
I (A) 401 562 680 797 958
ve current pulse
time in trailing arc

TR
t (ms) 8.35 9.56 10.44 11.32 12.53
Welding speed v (mm/s) 7 10 12.23 14.45 17.45

The weld bead dimensions are measured from the transverse section of each weld specimen
after polishing and etching with 2% nital solution using a pc-interfaced stereo-microscope (Leica
made, Model no. MZ6). The weld bead width is measured as the width of the fusion zone on the top
surface of the base plate. The penetration is measured as the depth of the fusion zone from the top
surface of the base plate. The reinforcement height is measured as the height of the weld deposition
above the top surface of the base plate. The volume fractions of Widmanstatten ferrite (
ws
),
acicular ferrite (
ac
), and allotriomorphic ferrite (
am
) phases are measured at ten locations (Fig. 2)
on each weld zone micrograph captured at 500X magnification with a pc-interfaced Olympus
optical microscope (Model no. GX51) following the point count method [ASTM E562, 2001]. Fig.
3(a) shows the schematic profile of the all-weld sub-size specimen to measure the weld bead tensile
strength [ASTM E8M, 2001]. The tensile strengths are measured in a pc-interfaced Instron 3369
machine at a crosshead speed of 5 mm/min. Fig. 3(b) shows the schematic profile of the sub-size
specimen to measure the Charpy impact toughness [ASTM E23, 2001] at 50
0
C using a Tinius
Olsen impact testing machine. The weld dimensions and mechanical properties are measured on
three independently prepared samples at each welding condition. Table A-1 in Appendix-I provides
all the measured results and the corresponding welding conditions.
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Fig. 2. Locations considered to measure the volume fractions of ferrite phases in fusion zone









Fig. 3. Schematic pictures of sub-size (a) all-weld tensile and (b) Charpy V-notch impact toughness
specimens [ASTM E8M, 2001 and ASTM E23, 2001], respectively.

The experimentally measured results are used to develop a set of response surface based
empirical models to estimate the weld dimensions and the mechanical properties as function of
welding conditions (Montgomery et al., 2006). Considering five input welding conditions
considered in the present work, a second order response surface based model is taken as

= + = = =
+ + + =
4
1
5
1
5
1
2
5
1
0
X X
i i j
j i ij
i
i ii
i
i i
X X Y (2)
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where

Y is a response variable (e.g. weld width, penetration, weld joint tensile strength, etc.) in
non-dimensional form,
1
X to
5
X refer to the welding conditions in non-dimensional form, s refer
to the coefficients of the Eq. (2). The coefficients, s, [in Eq. (2)] are estimated based on the
minimization of the error between the experimentally measured and the corresponding estimated
values of the response variables (Montgomery et al., 2006). The insignificant coefficients in each
model are eliminated following the step-wise regression analysis and the reduced estimation models
are tested for adequacy using the analysis of variance (Montgomery et al., 2006). The non-
dimensional forms of the response variables (

Y ) are considered as
WP WP
Y
WP
U
G p G
E
w t w
E
E ; ;
;
h
h ;
d
d ;
w
w
* Y
Y
U
U
* * *
* *
=

=
= = =

(3)
where w and
*
w , d and
*
d , h and
*
h ,
U
and
*
U
,
Y
and
*
Y
, and, E

and
*
E refer to the
measured and the corresponding non-dimensional values of weld width, penetration, reinforcement
height, tensile strength, yield strength and Charpy impact toughness, respectively. The terms
G
w ,
P
t ,
WP
U
,
WP
Y
and
WP
E in Eq. (3) refer to the width of the V-groove at the surface, thickness of the
base plate, ultimate tensile strength, yield strength and Charpy impact toughness of the workpiece
material, respectively. The values of these terms are as follows:
G
w = 7.04 mm;
P
t = 12 mm;
WP
U
=
662 MPa;
WP
Y
= 497 MPa;
WP
E = 51 J.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
Figs. 4(a) to (f) show the effects of welding speed (v), trailing wire negative current pulse
(

TR
I ) and leading wire current (
LE
I ) on the measured weld bead profile. A comparison of Figs. 4(a)
and (b) depicts a decrease in the weld bead dimensions with increase in welding speed (v) from 10.0
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to 14.45 mm/s. Increase in welding speed reduces the rate of heat input leading to smaller weld bead
dimensions. In contrast, increase in either trailing wire negative current pulse (

TR
I ) [Figs. 4(c) and
(d)] or in leading wire current (
LE
I ) [Figs. 4(e) and (f)] results in higher weld bead dimensions.
Increase in trailing wire current pulses and leading wire current results in higher rate of heat input
and greater weld bead dimensions.









Fig. 4. Measured weld macrographs at (a) v = 10.0 mm/s and (b) v = 14.45 mm/s for fixed values of
LE
I = 506 A,
+
TR
I = 343 A,

TR
I = 563 A,

TR
t = 9.56 ms; at (c)

TR
I = 563 A and (d)

TR
I = 797 A for
constant values of
LE
I = 506 A,
+
TR
I = 343 A,

TR
t = 11.32 ms, v = 10.0 mm/s; at (e)
LE
I = 384 A and
(f)
LE
I = 506 A for constant values of
+
TR
I = 343 A,

TR
I = 797 A,

TR
t = 9.56 ms, v = 10.0 mm/s.

Figs. 5(a) to (e) present the influence of five welding conditions on the measured values of
the final weld dimensions weld width, penetration and reinforcement height. Fig. 5(a) shows that
increase in the leading wire current (
LE
I ) from 300 to 590 A enhances the weld width (w) from
15.55 (0.46) to 19.75 (0.69) mm, the penetration (d) from 7.85 (0.16) to 8.9 (0.17) mm and the
reinforcement height (h) from 0.7 (0.06) to 1.60 (0.08) mm. The values within the parenthesis
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indicate the variability in the measured data in each case. Fig. 5(b) shows that increase in the
trailing wire positive current pulse (
+
TR
I ) from 319 to 401 A enhances the weld width (w) from 15.0
(0.50) to 18.98 (0.52) mm, the penetration (d) from 8.0 (0.12) to 8.52 (0.52) mm, and the
reinforcement height (h) from 1.0 (0.18) to 1.52 (0.11) mm. Fig. 5(c) shows that increase in the
trailing wire negative current pulse (

TR
I ) from 401 to 958 A enhances the weld width (w) from
13.20 (0.92) to 19.90 (1.30) mm, the penetration (d) from 8.0 (0.50) to 8.80 (0.53) mm, and
the reinforcement height (h) from 0.65 (0.08) to 1.60 (0.11) mm. Increase in leading wire current
(
LE
I ) and in trailing wire current pulses (
+
TR
I and

TR
I ) enhances the rate of heat input leading to
greater amount of electrode deposition and enhanced weld bead dimensions.
Fig. 5(d) shows that as the trailing wire negative current pulse time (

TR
t ) increases from
8.35 to 12.53 ms, the weld width (w) reduces from 19.04 (0.17) to 17.30 (0.35) mm and the
penetration (d) decreases from 8.34 (0.09) to 7.70 (0.26) mm. However, the reinforcement height
(h) increases from 0.64 (0.08) to 1.11 (0.10) mm. For a constant pulse frequency of 60 Hz,
increase in

TR
t leads to greater usage of arc energy for melting and deposition of electrode material
in comparison to the melting of workpiece material in each cycle of AC. In effect, the weld width
(w) and penetration (d) reduce with increase in

TR
t while the reinforcement height (h) increases.
Fig. 5(e) shows that as welding speed (v) increases from 7.0 to 17.45 mm/s, the weld width reduces
from 27.51 (0.61) to 14.0 (0.59) mm and the reinforcement height decreases from 2.74 (0.11)
mm to zero. However, the penetration remains nearly insensitive to the welding speed. A slight
increasing tendency in the measured penetration as the welding speed increases from 7.0 to 12.23
mm/s can possibly be attributed to the variability in the experimental results. Increase in welding
speed reduces the rate of heat input resulting in smaller weld dimensions. Figs. 4 and 5 show that
the final weld dimensions are significantly influenced by the welding conditions in SAW-T process.
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Fig. 5. Influence of (a) leading wire current [
LE
I = 300, 445 and 590 A], (b) trailing wire positive
current [
+
TR
I = 319, 360 and 401 A], (c) trailing wire negative current [

TR
I = 401, 680 and 958 A],
(d) trailing wire negative current pulse [

TR
t at 8.35, 10.44 and 12.53 ms], and (e) welding speed [v =
7.0, 12.23 and 17.45 mm/s] on measured weld bead dimensions. The constant values of other
welding conditions in each case are given in the box at the bottom right of the figure.
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Figs. 6(a) and (b) depict the optical micrographs of the fusion zone microstructure for a
typical welding condition at 500X and 1000X magnifications, respectively. Fig. 6 confirms that the
fusion zone microstructure primarily consists of the allotriomorphic ferrite (
am
), Widmanstatten
ferrite (
ws
) and intragrannularly grown acicular ferrite (
ac
) phases. The Allotriomorphic ferrite
(
am
) phase appears as parallel veins and the Widmanstatten ferrite (
ws
) phase emerges as parallel
branches from the allotriomorphic ferrite (
am
). The growth of the Widmanstatten ferrite (
ws
) with
the allotriomorphic ferrite (
am
) as its base is clearly visible in Fig. 6(b). The microstructure of
acicular ferrite (
ac
) is of interlocking in nature that facilitates the resistance to crack propagation
and improved mechanical properties (Grong and Matlock, 1986; Farhat, 2007; Viano et al., 2000).







Fig. 6. Fusion zone micrographs showing allotriomorphic ferrite (
am
), Widmanstatten ferrite (
ws
)
and acicular ferrite (
ac
) phases at (a) 500X and (b) 1000X magnifications. The welding conditions
are:
LE
I = 445 A,
+
TR
I = 401 A,

TR
I = 680 A,
+
TR
t = 6.23 ms,

TR
t =10.44 ms, and v = 12.23 mm/s.

Figs. 7(a) to (e) show the influence of welding conditions on the measured volume fractions
of the ferrite phases in the weld fusion zone. Fig. 7(a) shows that increase in
LE
I from 300 to 590 A
enhances allotriomorphic ferrite (
am
) phase from 12% (6.10) to 40.22% (7.89) and reduces
acicular ferrite (
ac
) phase from 87.11% (7.46) to 55.78% (8.53). The volume fraction of
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Widmanstatten ferrite (
ws
) phase initially increases from 0.9% (2.32) to 5.13% (4.49) as
LE
I
increases while decreases to 4.0% (3.9) thereafter with further increase in
LE
I . Fig. 7(b) shows that
the allotriomorphic ferrite (
am
) and Widmanstatten ferrite (
ws
) phases increase from 24.83% (6.4)
to 35.75% (10.81) and from 4.0% (2.45) to 5.38% (4.47), respectively, as
+
TR
I increases from
319 to 401 A. In contrast, the acicular ferrite (
ac
) phase decreases from 71.17% (5.56) to 58.63%
(11.78) with increase in
+
TR
I . Fig. 7(c) shows that the allotriomorphic ferrite (
am
) phase increases
from 18.93% (4.88) to 43.21% (8.35) and the acicular ferrite (
ac
) phase decreases from 75.92%
(5.95) to 52.49% (7.35) with increase in

TR
I from 401 to 958 A. The Widmanstatten ferrite (
ws
)
phase remains insensitive to changes in

TR
I . Higher leading wire current (
LE
I ) and trailing wire
current pulses (
+
TR
I and

TR
I ) enhance the rate of heat input leading to larger weld pool and reduced
cooling rate that inhibit the formation of acicular ferrite (
ac
) and encourage greater volume
fractions of the allotriomorphic ferrite (
am
) and Widmanstatten ferrite (
ws
) in weld microstructure
(Grong and Matlock, 1986; Farrar and Harrison, 1987; Kiran et al., 2010)
Fig. 7(d) shows that the allotriomorphic ferrite (
am
) and the Widmanstatten ferrite (
ws
)
phases reduce from 47% (3.89) to 17.56% (5.57) and from 1.52% (1.9) to zero, respectively as

TR
t increases from 8.35 to 12.53 ms. In contrast, the acicular ferrite (
ac
) phase increases from
51.48% (4.12) to 82.44% (5.57). For a constant pulse frequency (60 Hz), increase in trailing wire
negative pulse duration (

TR
t ) reduces the arc heating of the workpiece resulting in smaller weld
pool volume and higher cooling rate that encourages the formation of acicular ferrite (
ac
) phase.
Fig. 7(e) depicts that the acicular ferrite (
ac
) phase increases from 41.25% (7.83) to 81.88% (5.9)
as the welding speed (v) increases from 7.0 to 17.45 mm/s. In contrast, the allotriomorphic ferrite
(
am
) and the Widmanstatten ferrite (
ws
) phases reduce from 55.13% (10.18) to 18.88% (5.36)
and from 3.63% (4.53) to zero. Increase in welding speed (v) reduces the rate of heat input
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resulting in smaller weld pool and increased cooling rate assisting greater volume fraction of
acicular ferrite (
ac
) phase.

















Fig. 7. Influence of (a) leading wire current [
LE
I = 300, 445 and 590 A], (b) trailing wire positive
current [
+
TR
I = 319, 360 and 401 A], (c) trailing wire negative current [

TR
I = 401, 680 and 958 A],
(d) trailing wire negative current pulse duration [

TR
t at 8.35, 10.44 and 12.53 ms], and (e) welding
speed [v = 7.0, 12.23 and 17.45 mm/s] on the ferrite phases in the weld pool. The constant values of
other welding conditions in each case are given in the box at the bottom right of the figure.
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Figs. 8(a) to (e) show the influence of welding conditions on the measured values of weld
bead yield strength (
Y
), ultimate tensile strength (
U
) and Charpy impact toughness ( E ). Fig.
8(a) depicts deterioration in
Y
,
U
and E from 570.0 (10.3) to 511.7 (12.6) MPa, 713.5 (13.9)
to 637.64 (10.6) MPa, and 53.3 (3.84) to 20.76 (0.50) J, respectively as
LE
I increases from 300
to 590 A. Increase in
+
TR
I also reduces
Y
from 552.0 (12.1) to 522.3 (10.2) MPa,
U
from
696.0 (16.5) to 638.0 (5.32) MPa, and E from 57.0 (5.06) to 18.84 (4.91) J [Fig. 8(b)].
Similarly, increase in

TR
I from 401 to 958 A reduces
Y
from 557 (12.2) to 517 (13.0) MPa,
U

from 727 (15.2) to 632 (14.7) MPa, and E from 15.6 (2.16) to 12.0 (2.23) J [Fig. 8(c)].
Increase in leading arc current (
LE
I ) and trailing wire current pulses (
+
TR
I or

TR
I ) results in greater
heat input, larger weld pool volume and reduced cooling rate that inhibits the formation of
strengthening phases like acicular ferrite [Figs. 7(a) to (c)] and leads to poor mechanical properties.
Fig. 8(d) shows that increase in

TR
t from 8.35 to 12.53 ms improves
Y
from 509.0 (9.05)
to 533.0 (2.54) MPa,
U
from 618.4 (2.74) to 657.2 (11.7) MPa, and E from 8.29 (0.40) to
14.28 (2.14) J. Fig. 8(e) depicts increase in welding speed (v) from 7.0 to 17.45 mm/s improves
Y
from 490.2 (1.47) to 540.6 (3.24) MPa,
U
from 614.8 (3.01) to 665.1 (6.98) MPa, and E
from 8.69 (0.63) to 27.51 (1.94) J. Increase in trailing wire negative pulse duration (

TR
t ) and in
welding speed (v) reduces the arc heating of workpiece resulting in smaller weld pool and greater
cooling rate that encourages the strengthening phases like acicular ferrite [Figs. 7(d) and (e)] and
improved mechanical properties (Prasad and Dwivedi, 2008).
Eqs. (4) (9) depict the response surface based empirical models for the estimation of weld
bead dimensions and mechanical properties as function of five welding conditions,
4 3 3 2
2
5
2
3
2
2 5 4 3 2 1
0.043 0.037 0.062 0.043
0.032 0.39 0.071 0.157 0.045 0.12 2.655
X X X X X X
X X X X X X w
*
+
+ + + =
(4)
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Fig. 8. Influence of (a) leading wire current [
LE
I = 300, 445 and 590 A], (b) trailing wire positive
current [
+
TR
I = 319, 360 and 401 A], (c) trailing wire negative current [

TR
I = 401, 680 and 958 A],
(d) trailing wire negative current pulse [

TR
t at 8.35, 10.44 and 12.53 ms], and (e) welding speed [v =
7.0, 12.23 and 17.45 mm/s] on measured weld bead mechanical properties. The constant values of
other welding conditions in each case are given in the box at the bottom right of the figure.
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5 4 4 3
2
5 5 4 3 2 1
0.012 0.013
0.015 0.015 0.01 0.007 0.007 0.026 0.709
X X X X
X X X X X X d
*
+
+ + + =
(5)
3 1
2
5
2
3
2
2
2
1 5 4 3 2 1
0.006 0.011 0.004 0.008
0.005 0.082 0.01 0.036 0.009 0.023 0.126
X X X X X
X X X X X X h
*
+ + +
+ + + + + =
(6)
2
3
2
1 5 4 3 2 1
0.007
0.006 0.014 0.001 0.012 0.007 0.014 0.972
X
X X X X X X
U
+
+ + + =

(7)
2
5
2
1 5 4 3 2 1
0.005
0.004 0.021 0.003 0.012 0.004 0.015 1.066
X
X X X X X X
Y

+ + =

(8)
4 3 5 1 4 1
2
2
2
1 5 4 3 2 1
0.037 0.057 0.047 0.067
0.064 0.107 0.018 0.009 0.034 0.102 0.205
X X X X X X X
X X X X X X E
*
+ + +
+ + =
(9)
where X
1
, X
2
, X
3
, X
4
and X
5
refer to the leading wire current (
LE
I ), trailing wire positive (
+
TR
I ) and
negative (

TR
I ) current pulses, trailing wire negative pulse duration (

TR
t ) and welding speed (v) in
non-dimensional form [Eq. (1)]. The actual expressions of X
1
to X
5
are presented in Appendix-I
[Eqs. (A1) to (A5)]. Eqs. (4) to (9) depict significant non-linear relations between the welding
conditions and the weld bead dimensions and the mechanical properties. The positive coefficients
corresponding to X
1
, X
2
and X
3
in Eqs. (4) to (6) clearly indicate that the leading wire current, and
the trailing wire positive and negative current pulses have a direct effect on the final weld bead
dimensions. In contrast, the coefficients of X
1
, X
2
and X
3
are negative in Eqs. (7) to (9). The weld
bead mechanical properties deteriorate with increase in leading wire current and trailing wire
current pulses as shown earlier in Figs. 8(a) to (c). The negative coefficients of X
5
in Eqs. (4) to (6)
depict that increase in welding speed will generally reduce the rate of heat input resulting in smaller
weld bead dimensions. Smaller weld pool enhances the cooling rate and hence, welding speed
shows a direct influence on the weld bead mechanical properties in Eqs. (7) to (9). The coefficients
of X
4
in Eqs. (4) to (6) show that the increase in trailing wire negative pulse duration would reduce
Page 18 of 25
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the bead width and penetration while enhance the reinforcement height slightly. Increase in trailing
wire negative pulse duration results in greater usage of arc energy for melting of electrode in
comparison to workpiece leading to smaller width and penetration but larger reinforcement height.
Figs. 9(a) to (f) depict the measured results of the six response variables (in non-dimensional
form)
*
w ,
*
d ,
*
h ,

U
,

Y
and
*
E vis--vis the corresponding estimated values following Eqs.
(4) to (9). It can be noted that the measured results in Figs. 9(a) to (f) belong to set no.s #51 to #57
in Table A-1 (Appendix-I) that are not used to develop the empirical relations [Eqs. (5) to (9)] are
developed. A fairly good agreement between the estimated values and the corresponding measured
results can be observed in Figs. 9(a) to (f). The adequacy of these empirical relations is examined by
computing the adjusted coefficient of determination, which depicts the proportion of the variation in
the response explained by a response surface based model (Montgomery et al., 2006). The adjusted
coefficient of determination (
2
adj
R ) corresponding to the Eqs. (4) to (6) are calculated as 0.94, 0.72
and 0.97, respectively. Thus, it can be envisaged that Eq. (4) is able to capture 94% of the variation
in the measured values of weld width as function of the five independent welding conditions within
the ranges considered in the present study. Similarly, the adjusted coefficient of determination
(
2
adj
R ) corresponding to the Eqs. (7) to (9) are estimated as 0.60, 0.69 and 0.67, respectively.
Although the compound influence of the welding conditions in two-wire SAW-T process on
the weld bead quality has been reported in recent literature (Farhat, 2007; Moeinifar et al., 2011;
Pilipenko et al., 2001; Shen et al., 2012; Viano et al., 2000), a details quantitative effects of the
individual process parameters on weld dimensions and mechanical properties are currently not
available. The novelty of the present work is the detailed quantitative investigation of the effects of
the key welding variables on the final weld bead quality in typical two-wire DC-AC SAW-T, which
is critical for the successful application of the tandem welding process.
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Fig. 9. Estimated values of response variables vis--vis corresponding measured results: (a) weld
width, (b) penetration, (c) reinforcement height, (d) ultimate tensile strength, (e) yield strength, and
(f) Charpy impact toughness.
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CONCLUSIONS
The present work has reported a detailed experimental study on single-pass two-wire
tandem submerged arc welding process of a typical HSLA steel plate of 12 mm thickness. In
particular, the quantitative effects of the trailing wire current pulses and negative current pulse
duration, leading wire current, and welding speed on the weld bead dimensions and mechanical
properties are studied at fifty different sets of welding conditions that are designed following the
principle of two-level, five factor central composite rotatable design. The experimental results show
that the final weld bead width and reinforcement height are primarily influenced by the trailing wire
current while the penetration is influenced by the leading wire current with the other conditions
remaining constant. Increase in trailing wire current pulses enhance the weld pool size that tends to
reduce the cooling rate, inhibit acicular ferrite phases in weld microstructure and result in poor
mechanical properties. In contrast, increase in welding speed tends to reduce weld pool size leading
to higher cooling rate that encourages greater volume fraction of acicular ferrite phase and better
weld bead mechanical properties. The predictions of weld dimensions and mechanical properties
from the empirical relations, which are developed based on the experimental results, are in fair
agreement with the corresponding measured values within the ranges of the welding conditions
considered in this work.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
The authors gratefully acknowledge the financial support provided by the Government of
India (grant no. NMRL/PP&C/1207/MISC) to carry out the present research work.



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Appendix-I
Table A-1
Measured weld dimensions and mechanical properties at various welding conditions.
Set
no.
LE
I

(A)
+
TR
I
(A)

TR
I
(A)

TR
t
(ms)
v
(mm/s)
w (mm) d (mm) h (mm) UTS (MPa) YS (MPa) Toughness
(J)
1 1 1 1 1 1 19.32 0.34 8.41 0.12 0.86 0.13 645 9.9 526.5 7.4 10.96 1.62
2 +1 1 1 1 1 21.10 0.56 9.04 0.05 1.32 0.12 638.4 12.0 524.2 9.3 12.86 2.42
3 1 +1 1 1 1 19.50 0.57 8.60 0.37 1.20 0.08 663.5 10.7 543.2 10.5 19.46 7.37
4 +1 +1 1 1 1 21.00 0.97 9.04 0.31 1.70 0.08 655.0 1.9 539.5 9.1 13.01 2.49
5 1 1 +1 1 1 22.71 1.03 8.50 0.04 1.75 0.02 640.3 10.6 513.9 12.9 10.21 1.30
6 +1 1 +1 1 1 23.11 0.19 9.61 0.03 1.82 0.11 633.5 6.5 510.0 11.1 8.81 1.33
7 1 +1 +1 1 1 22.71 1.14 8.60 0.38 2.00 0.16 639.0 9.1 522.0 10.3 26.61 4.88
8 +1 +1 +1 1 1 24.28 0.21 9.65 0.32 1.99 0.20 632.0 9.1 504.0 8.6 6.47 1.17
9 1 1 1 +1 1 19.58 0.25 8.14 0.31 1.33 0.12 650.0 9.9 528.7 14.9 7.57 0.22
10 +1 1 1 +1 1 21.60 0.22 8.90 0.33 1.68 0.11 637.0 7.0 511.0 7.2 8.34 2.09
11 1 +1 1 +1 1 18.50 0.93 8.53 0.36 1.45 0.13 652.9 3.6 530.3 4.5 15.68 2.71
12 +1 +1 1 +1 1 21.60 0.38 9.02 0.10 1.64 0.03 627.6 5.6 505.0 4.8 7.91 1.86
13 1 1 +1 +1 1 21.42 0.64 7.62 0.20 1.83 0.03 650.0 9.2 523.6 4.4 9.38 2.61
14 +1 1 +1 +1 1 22.35 0.45 8.59 0.07 2.03 0.13 638.0 4.5 512.5 8.7 7.86 0.36
15 1 +1 +1 +1 1 22.50 0.44 7.65 0.09 1.82 0.06 629.9 9.8 511.6 10.9 9.10 0.29
16 +1 +1 +1 +1 1 22.38 0.38 8.94 0.21 2.01 0.03 616.2 11.6 497.2 5.2 7.03 1.39
17 1 1 1 1 +1 14.89 0.39 7.21 0.10 0.00 673.0 9.2 550.0 2.5 47.33 9.53
18 +1 1 1 1 +1 16.58 0.39 8.21 0.31 0.34 0.08 660.1 4.9 545.0 8.2 14.81 0.11
19 1 +1 1 1 +1 14.94 0.91 7.53 0.43 0.00 663.4 6.0 546.1 4.6 51.90 0.67
20 +1 +1 1 1 +1 15.82 0.48 8.46 0.14 0.33 0.05 654.6 5.3 543.3 6.3 13.40 3.45
21 1 1 +1 1 +1 16.01 0.71 8.25 0.09 0.61 0.13 673.3 8.2 549.1 12.7 42.80 4.36
22 +1 1 +1 1 +1 18.23 0.12 8.61 0.30 0.75 0.09 645.0 3.6 533.2 2.2 9.34 0.60
23 1 +1 +1 1 +1 16.76 0.55 8.29 0.10 0.65 0.08 660.0 10.0 544.8 5.7 20.42 2.33
24 +1 +1 +1 1 +1 20.16 0.28 8.61 0.30 0.83 0.05 645.8 11.4 530.0 9.6 16.69 5.89
25 1 1 1 +1 +1 14.37 0.31 7.65 0.07 0.00 664.0 7.8 552.0 7.5 25.43 3.46
26 +1 1 1 +1 +1 15.74 0.21 8.55 0.06 0.49 0.13 652.2 10.4 528.4 9.2 21.14 0.92
27 1 +1 1 +1 +1 14.10 0.35 7.83 0.19 0.00 666.0 6.1 549.0 2.0 18.17 5.61
28 +1 +1 1 +1 +1 15.72 0.23 8.65 0.13 0.50 0.15 640.6 0.36 526.9 2.0 14.64 2.37
29 1 1 +1 +1 +1 14.35 0.27 8.19 0.19 0.56 0.11 659.0 11.3 537.0 13.4 35.04 3.33
30 +1 1 +1 +1 +1 16.81 0.15 8.26 0.06 1.04 0.05 655.5 3.9 532.5 4.1 20.57 11.3
31 1 +1 +1 +1 +1 15.37 0.25 8.32 0.15 0.62 0.03 661.0 6.6 536.5 8.9 35.22 6.13
32 +1 +1 +1 +1 +1 17.06 0.62 8.26 0.18 1.15 0.17 648.0 9.3 528.0 5.8 22.19 2.55
33 2.3784 0 0 0 0 15.55 0.46 7.85 0.16 0.70 0.06 713.5 13.9 570.0 10.3 53.30 3.84
34 +2.3784 0 0 0 0 19.75 0.69 8.90 0.17 1.60 0.08 637.6 10.6 511.7 12.6 20.76 0.50
35 0 2.3784 0 0 0 15.00 0.50 8.00 0.12 1.00 0.18 696.0 16.5 552.0 12.1 57.0 5.06
Page 22 of 25
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Table A-1
Measured weld dimensions and mechanical properties (contd.)
Set
no.
LE
I

(A)
+
TR
I
(A)

TR
I
(A)

TR
t
(ms)
v
(mm/s)
w (mm) d (mm) h (mm) UTS (MPa) YS (MPa) Toughness
(J)
36 0 +2.3784 0 0 0 18.98 0.52 8.52 0.11 1.52 0.11 638.0 5.3 522.3 10.2 18.84 4.91
37 0 0 2.3784 0 0 13.20 0.92 8.10 0.50 0.65 0.08 727.0 15.2 557.5 12.2 15.60 2.16
38 0 0 +2.3784 0 0 19.90 1.30 8.80 0.53 1.60 0.11 632.6 14.7 517.0 13.0 12.00 2.23
39 0 0 0 2.3784 0 20.64 0.17 8.44 0.09 0.64 0.08 618.4 2.7 508.9 9.1 8.29 0.40
40 0 0 0 +2.3784 0 17.30 0.35 7.70 0.26 1.09 0.10 657.2 11.7 533.2 2.5 14.28 2.14
42 0 0 0 0 +2.3784 14.00 0.59 7.20 0.25 0.00 665.1 7.0 540.6 3.2 27.51 1.94
41 0 0 0 0 2.3784 27.51 0.61 7.13 0.04 2.74 0.11 614.8 3.0 490.2 1.5 8.69 0.63
42 0 0 0 0 +2.3784 14.00 0.59 7.20 0.25 0.00 665.1 7.0 540.6 3.2 27.51 1.94
43 0 0 0 0 0 18.63 0.61 8.38 0.19 0.91 0.06 648.4 8.0 527.8 6.7 13.59 3.20
44 0 0 0 0 0 18.73 0.72 8.36 0.19 0.97 0.05 656.0 9.3 532.5 5.7 17.73 4.53
45 0 0 0 0 0 17.45 0.26 8.32 0.11 0.90 0.06 640.9 11.2 516.9 12.4 15.28 4.85
46 0 0 0 0 0 19.50 0.94 8.44 0.12 0.77 0.17 650.3 8.4 522.3 11.0 10.48 2.32
47 0 0 0 0 0 18.62 0.61 8.35 0.19 0.91 0.06 648.4 8.0 527.8 6.7 13.61 3.33
48 0 0 0 0 0 19.18 0.67 8.27 0.29 0.96 0.05 640.5 7.4 521.9 4.1 9.56 1.29
49 0 0 0 0 0 17.88 0.35 8.33 0.29 0.88 0.11 664.5 12.7 543.0 13.5 12.82 3.99
50 0 0 0 0 0 19.05 0.71 8.42 0.10 0.99 0.20 638.3 8.6 530.0 7.6 15.65 4.56
51 +1.5582 1.3922 +1.5756 +1.775 +0.5075 20.09 0.34 9.06 0.07 1.59 0.09 660.2 2.0 524.3 4.0 9.80 3.40
52 +1.5582 1.3922 +1.5756 +0.410 +0.5075 20.26 0.37 8.94 0.14 1.47 0.10 658.1 7.8 532.1 8.3 10.67 2.10
53 +1.5582 1.3922 +1.5756 1.832 +0.5075 21.89 0.42 8.92 0.22 1.36 0.07 643.2 12.3 522.1 18.2 6.08 0.64
54 +0.4921 1.3922 +1.5756 +1.775 +0.5075 19.82 0.70 8.55 0.18 1.27 0.02 661.8 12.3 523.9 10.6 10.28 1.30
55 0.4921 1.3922 +1.5756 +1.775 +0.5075 17.07 0.56 8.49 0.05 0.89 0.14 671.4 11.2 508.0 13.7 15.70 10.7
56 +0.4921 1.3922 +1.5756 +1.775 0.5075 21.78 0.37 9.54 0.16 1.62 0.07 634.0 11.0 512.5 11.1 8.14 1.0
57 +0.4921 1.3922 +1.5756 +1.775 1.6956 25.22 0.17 8.14 0.06 2.44 0.26 612.0 17.9 482.6 9.2 7.27 1.88
**Set no.s 51 to 57 are used only for the validation of the response surface based models.

0 . 7 45 . 17
)] 0 . 7 45 . 17 ( 2 [
374 . 2
35 . 8 53 . 12
)] 35 . 8 53 . 12 ( 2 [
374 . 2 ;
401 958
)] 401 958 ( 2 [
374 . 2
319 401
)] 319 401 ( 2 [
374 . 2 ;
300 590
)] 300 590 ( 2 [
374 . 2
5
4 3
2 1

+
=

+
=

+
=

+
=

+
=

+
v
X
t
X
I
X
I
X
I
X
TR TR
TR LE
(A1-A5)



Page 23 of 25
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REFERENCES
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The Welding Institute, Cambridge, pp. 3143.
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ASTM E23, 2001. Standard Test Methods for Notched Bar Impact Testing of Metallic Materials.
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Gunaraj, V., Murugan, N., 1999. Application of response surface methodology for predicting weld
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Konkol, P.J., Koons, G.F., 1978. Optimization of parameters for two wire DC-AC submerged arc
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Uttrachi, G.D., 1978. Multiple electrode systems for submerged arc welding. Welding J. 78, 1522.
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