The use of magnetic fields to treat manufactured parts is attractive since easy-to-produce, easy-to-control fields can be used at room temperature, in contrast to more complex treatments such as heat treatment. Little research has been done to apply magnetic treatment to the modification and control of mechanical properties, behavior and performance of manufactured parts. This paper contains descriptions of experimental studies of the effects of pulsed magnetic treatment on the residual stress in machined surfaces and in welded thin-wall tubes, and includes a qualitative explanation of some of the results in terms of dislocation density. The machined part results indicated only possibly small effects, and so further experiments were done with thin-wall tubes that were expected to be more susceptible to magnetic treatment, and a more sensitive measurement technique was used. The difference in damping of vibration of untreated and pulsed magnetically treated welded tubes was used as a measure of treatment effects. Two significant results are reported. One is that pulsed magnetic treatment increased damping by up to 20%, with smaller effects in most tests. The other result is that damping increased, decreased, increased, and so on, as the length of magnetic treatment was increased.

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