A numerical study of the effect of loading conditions on tubular hydroforming

N. Siva Prasad Varma, R. Narasimhan

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In this work, the mechanics of tubular hydroforming under various types of loading conditions is investigated. The main objective is to contrast the effects of prescribing fluid pressure or volume flow rate, in conjunction with axial displacement, on the stress and strain histories experienced by the tube and the process of bulging. To this end, axisymmetric finite element simulations of free hydroforming (without external die contact) of aluminium alloy tubes are carried out. Hill's normally anisotropic yield theory along with material properties determined in a previous experimental study [A. Kulkarni, P. Biswas, R. Narasimhan, A. Luo, T. Stoughton, R. Mishra, A.K. Sachdev, An experimental and numerical study of necking initiation in aluminium alloy tubes during hydroforming, Int. J. Mech. Sci. 46 (2004) 1727-1746] are employed in the computations. It is found that while prescribed fluid pressure leads to highly non-proportional strain paths, specified fluid volume flow rate may result in almost proportional ones for the predominant portion of loading. The peak pressure increases with axial compression for the former, while the reverse trend applies under the latter. The implication of these results on failure by localized necking of the tube wall is addressed in a subsequent investigation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)174-183
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Materials Processing Technology
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - Jan 21 2008
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


  • Finite elements
  • Loading conditions
  • Strain paths
  • Tubular hydroforming


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