This paper explores the joining of materials by a new progressive method of thermal drilling. Many types of joints are utilized in industrial production, especially in the automotive industry, which requires the joining of different types of materials with different thicknesses. For these needs, it will be appropriate to apply the joining method of thermal drilling technology. The used material, its mechanical properties, and the preparation of the joint by assembly and disassembly operations play an equally important role. By using new friction technologies, we can reduce production time, increase joint quality, offer automation in certain types of operations, save economic costs, and protect the environment. In this contribution, the authors present the results of their scientific research work focused on an investigation, comparison and testing of thermal drilling effects on the behavior of aluminum alloys (AlMgSi). The holes, collars and bushings formed by the drilling method were subjected to visual shape evaluation. Based on the evaluation of the samples, the quality of the evaluated joints was assessed. The best shape and strength properties at higher speeds of the drilling machine were obtained at 3400 rpm. The results of the methods of macroscopy and microscopy investigations, as well as the results of the methods of scanning electron microscope (SEM) and energy dispersive X-ray (EDS), are presented in this contribution.
Keywords: material joining; microstructure; thermal drilling; visual evaluation.