Implementation of lightweight low-ductility materials such as aluminum alloys, magnesium alloys and composite materials has become urgently needed for automotive manufacturers to improve the competitiveness of their products. However, the hybrid use of these materials poses big challenges to joining processes. Self-piercing riveting (SPR) is currently the most popular technique for joining dissimilar materials and has been widely used in joining all-aluminum and multi-material vehicle bodies. However, in riveting magnesium alloys, cracks always occur for its low ductility. In this paper, a hybrid joining process named friction self-piercing riveting (F-SPR), which combines mechanical joining mechanism of SPR with solid-state joining mechanism of friction stir spot welding (FSSW) by making rivet rotating at high speed in riveting process, was proposed aiming at joining the low ductility materials. 1-mm-thick AA6061-T6 and 2-mm-thick AZ31B were used to validate the effectiveness of the F-SPR process. The results showed that the F-SPR process could significantly improve the rivetability of magnesium alloys, and greatly increase the joint strength, comparing with traditional SPR process.

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