Development of an Automated System for Adaptive Post-Weld Treatment and Quality Inspection of Linear Welds

Anders Faarbæk Mikkelstrup*, Morten Kristiansen, Ewa Kristiansen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
82 Downloads (Pure)


High-frequency mechanical impact (HFMI) treatment is a well-documented post-weld treatment to improve the fatigue life of welds. Treatment of the weld toe must be performed by a skilled operator due to the curved and inconsistent nature of the weld toe to ensure an acceptable quality. However, the process is characterised by noise and vibrations; hence, manual treatment should be avoided for extended periods of time. This work proposes an automated system for applying robotised 3D scanning to perform post-weld treatment and quality inspection of linear welds. A 3D scan of the weld is applied to locally determine the gradient and curvature across the weld surface to locate the weld toe. Based on the weld toe position, an adaptive robotic treatment trajectory is generated that accurately follows the curvature of the weld toe and adapts tool orientation to the weld profile. The 3D scan is reiterated after the treatment, and the surface gradient and curvature are further applied to extract the quantitative measures of the treatment, such as weld toe radius, indentation depth, and groove deviation and width. The adaptive robotic treatment is compared experimentally to manual and linear robotic treatment. This is done by treating 600-mm weld toe of each treatment type and evaluating the quantitative measures using the developed system. The results showed that the developed system reduced the overall treatment variance by respectively 26.6% and 31.9%. Additionally, a mean weld toe deviation of 0.09 mm was achieved; thus, improving process stability yet minimising human involvement.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology
Issue number5-6
Pages (from-to)3675-3693
Number of pages19
Publication statusPublished - 8 Jan 2022


  • Weld toe treatment
  • 3D scanning
  • Point cloud processing
  • Computer vision
  • Process automation
  • Robotics


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