The development of techniques to improve the welding of super duplex steels is necessary in order to ensure that the phase balance and properties of the material are not affected during this process. Hybrid arc-laser welding is a perfect combination of the advantages of both processes, producing deeper weld beads with more balanced phases than the pulsed laser process. Here, the objective was to improve the corrosion resistance of UNS S32750 weld beads by increasing the volumetric austenite percentage in the fusion zone (FZ) with a hybrid process of GTAW (gas tungsten arc welding) and pulsed laser Nd-YAG (neodymium-doped yttrium aluminum garnet). Welds were performed in bead on plate conditions with fixed laser parameters and a varying heat input introduced through the GTAW process. Additionally, welds within a nitrogen atmosphere were performed. After base metal characterization, an analysis of the FZ and heat affected zone were performed with optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy and critical pitting tests (CPT). The synergy between the thermal input provided by the hybrid process and austenite-promoting characteristic of nitrogen led to a balanced volumetric austenite/ferrite fraction. Consequently, the results obtained in CPT tests were better than conventional welding processes, such as laser or GTAW solely.
Keywords: GTAW; UNS S32750; austenite; hybrid welding; pulsed laser; super duplex.