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Published by msaad2

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Published by: msaad2 on Jul 19, 2010
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Welding, in engineering, any process in which two or more pieces of metal are joined together by the application of heat, pressure, or acombination of both. Most of the processes may be grouped into twomain categories: pressure welding, in which the weld is achieved bypressure; and heat welding, in which the weld is achieved by heat.Heat welding is the most common welding process used today. Brazingand soldering (
Solder) are other means of joining metals.With the development of new techniques during the first half of the20th century, welding replaced bolting and riveting in the constructionof many types of structures, including bridges, buildings, and ships. Itis also a basic process in the automotive and aircraft industries and inthe manufacture of machinery. Along with soldering and brazing, it isessential in the production of virtually every manufactured productinvolving metals. The welding process best suited to joining two pieces of metal dependson the physical properties of the metals, the specific use to which theyare applied, and the production facilities available. Welding processesare generally classified according to the sources of heat and pressureused. The original pressure process was forge welding. Forge welding waspracticed for centuries by blacksmiths and other artisans (
Forging). The metals are brought to a suitable temperature in a furnace, and theweld is achieved by hammering or other mechanical pressure. Forgewelding is used rarely in modern manufacturing. The welding processes most commonly employed today include gaswelding, arc welding, and resistance welding. Other joining processesinclude thermite welding, laser welding, electron-beam welding, andmagnetic-pulse welding.
Gas welding is a no pressure process using heat from a gas flame. Theflame is applied directly to the metal edges to be joined andsimultaneously to a filler metal in wire or rod form, called the weldingrod, which is melted to the joint. Gas welding has the advantage of involving equipment that is portable and does not require an electricpower source. The surfaces to be welded and the welding rod arecoated with flux, a fusible material that shields the material from air,which would result in a defective weld.
Arc-welding processes, which have become the most importantwelding processes, particularly for joining steels, require a continuoussupply of either direct or alternating electrical current. This current isused to create an electric arc, which generates enough heat to meltmetal and create a weld (
Electric Arc).Arc welding has several advantages over other welding methods. Arcwelding is faster because of its high heat concentration, which alsotends to reduce distortion in the weld. Also, in certain methods of arcwelding, fluxes are not necessary. The most widely used arc-weldingprocesses are shielded metal arc, gas-tungsten arc, gas-metal arc,submerged arc, and plasma arc.
In shielded metal-arc welding, a metallic electrode, which conductselectricity, is coated with flux and connected to a source of electriccurrent. The metal to be welded is connected to the other end of thesame source of current. By touching the tip of the electrode to themetal and then drawing it away, an electric arc is formed. The intenseheat of the arc melts both parts to be welded and the point of themetal electrode, which supplies filler metal for the weld. This process,
developed in the early 20th century, is used primarily for weldingsteels.
In gas-tungsten arc welding, a tungsten electrode is used in place of the metal electrode used in shielded metal-arc welding. A chemicallyinert gas, such as argon or helium, is used to shield the metal fromoxidation. The heat from the arc formed between the electrode and themetal melts the edges of the metal. Metal for the weld may be addedby placing a bare wire in the arc or the point of the weld. This processcan be used with nearly all metals and produces a high-quality weld.However, the rate of welding is considerably slower than in otherprocesses.
In gas-metal welding, a bare electrode is shielded from the air bysurrounding it with argon or carbon dioxide gas or by coating theelectrode with flux. The electrode is fed into the electric arc, and meltsoff in droplets to enter the liquid metal that forms the weld. Mostcommon metals can be joined by this process.
In resistance welding, heat is obtained from the resistance of metal tothe flow of an electric current. Electrodes are clamped on each side of the parts to be welded, the parts are subjected to great pressure, anda heavy current is applied briefly. The point where the two metalsmeet creates resistance to the flow of current. This resistance causesheat, which melts the metals and creates the weld. Resistance weldingis extensively employed in many fields of sheet metal or wiremanufacturing and is particularly adaptable to repetitive welds madeby automatic or semiautomatic machines.In thermite welding, heat is generated by the chemical reaction thatresults when a mixture of aluminum powder and iron oxide, known as

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