Laser welding of wrought magnesium alloy has been investigated through experimentation and simulation. Laser butt welds and laser lap welds were performed on 2.0 mm thick magnesium alloy AZ31 plates using a 1 kW fiber laser and shielded with argon gas. The effects of laser power and welding speed on weld geometry and microstructure were investigated. Through experimentation, the ranges of operating parameters for laser power and welding speed which resulted in viable, defect-free welds were found and reported. Simulations were carried out to predict the weld pool geometry and resultant microstructure and are shown to be in good agreement with experimental results.

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