Strength and Failure of Self-Piercing Riveted Aluminum and Steel Sheet Joints: Multi-axial Experiments and Modeling

Nikolaos Karathanasopoulos, Dirk Mohr

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The mechanical failure of self-piercing rivet (SPR) joints connecting seven series aluminum and high strength steel sheets is investigated, both numerically and experimentally. The joint strength and failure mechanisms are characterized for a total of four distinct loading modes, including the lap-shear, cross-tension, inclined cross tension and coach peel. For the analysis of the underlying influential parameters in each loading case, joint designs with equal total sheet thickness and equal rivet head diameters are considered. The highest strength values are obtained in lap-shear loading for all joint types, while high rivet interlock joints are observed to pair with increased cross-tension strength values. Moreover, the loading mode in which the highest energy is absorbed directly relates to the joint type. Depending on the material combination to be joined, either the cross-tension or the coach-peel cases yielded the highest energy absorption. The experimental results indicate that high rivet hardness and bottom sheet strength values have a favorable impact on the coach-peel strength and the associated deformation response. For all failure modes, the lowest rivet hardness employed (H4) was proven sufficient to prevent rivet failure in the joint types employed, despite the substantial equivalent plastic strains developed in it. Furthermore, high interlocks were noted to primarily affect the lap shear failure mode, inducing significant bottom sheet damage upon fracture, with the failure response observed in all other loading cases to remain practically insensitive to the interlock magnitude.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number100107
JournalJournal of Advanced Joining Processes
StatePublished - Jun 2022


  • Advanced high strength steel
  • Aluminum alloy
  • Ductile fracture
  • Experimental Testing
  • Finite element modeling
  • Self-pierce riveting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)


Dive into the research topics of 'Strength and Failure of Self-Piercing Riveted Aluminum and Steel Sheet Joints: Multi-axial Experiments and Modeling'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this