Characterization of Ti-6Al-4V Bar for Aerospace Fastener Pin Axial Forging




alpha phase, beta phase, hardness, microstructure, fractography, tensile, porosity


Ti-6Al-4V warm forged fasteners are a critical part of the aerospace industry, as they are used in vast quantities for mechanical joining of components for the fuselage, wing-skin and aero-engine. These components are produced in vast quantities at rapid production rates through multi-blow axial forging However the rate that they are manufactured means that manufacturers rely upon periodic part conformance testing to understand if the part is within tolerance or if any undesirable manufacturing defects such as cracks or underfilling are present. Thus, a right-first-time manufacturing approach is essential to minimize non-conformant scrap. An analysis of the Ti-6Al-4V supplied raw material for axial forging, in a variety of different bar diameter sizes and from different industrial suppliers, was conducted. This was to attempt to understand whether material property variation or operator variation was the root cause for some material behaving differently during the manufacture route. Experimental testing was performed through microstructure characterization and mechanical testing methods. The volume fraction of the β-phase was noted to be marginally higher in material with good forgeability. The hardness of the inner core of the bar appears to be a critical material property for the Ti-6Al4V bar, with an overly hard bar-core hindering forgeability of the bar. This is believed to be due to the hotter central region malleability being key for forgeability. Micro-void porosity was also noted which could lead to stress concentration locations, or crack initiation, and as such is a deleterious property for forgeability. The experienced forgeability of the Ti-6Al-4V bars have been demonstrated to be sensitive to rather small variation in measured microstructure and mechanical property. It is believed that cumulative impacts of small differences, 1% variation in α-phase volume fraction, small variations in elongation to failure, 1% variation in elastic modulus and microhardness profile variation at the center of the bar of less than 10 HV0.3, can combine to significantly impact the forgeability of Ti-6Al-4V bar.




How to Cite

Turner, R.; Smith, C.; Zneimer, L.; Medlock, L.; Simms Ridgeway, A.; Subramanian, G.; Patel, T. .; Warnken, N. . Characterization of Ti-6Al-4V Bar for Aerospace Fastener Pin Axial Forging. Mater. Plus 2024, 3, 1-17.