Ultrasonic additive manufacturing (UAM) has proven useful in the solid-state, low tempe’rature fabrication of layered solid metal structures. It is necessary to optimize the various process variables that affect the quality of bonding between layers through investigation of the mechanical strength of various UAM builds. We investigate the effect of the process parameters tack force, weld force, oscillation amplitude, and weld rate on the ultimate shear strength (USS) and ultimate transverse tensile strength (UTTS) of 3003-H18 aluminum UAM built samples. A multifactorial experiment was designed and an analysis of variance was performed to obtain an optimal set of process parameters for maximizing mechanical strength for the tested factors. The statistical analyses indicate that a relatively high mechanical strength can be achieved with a process window bounded by a 350 N tack force, 1000 N weld force, 26 μm oscillation amplitude, and about 42 mm/s weld rate. Optical analyses of bond characterization did not show a consistent correlation linking linear weld density and bonded area of fractured surfaces to mechanical strength. Therefore, scanning electronmicroscopy (SEM) was conducted on fractured samples showing a good correlation between mechanical strength and area fraction that shows ductile failure.

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