CSWIP 3.

1 Welding Inspection

Tungsten Inert Gas or Gas Tungsten Arc Welding
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Course Reference WIS 5

Tungsten Inert Gas Welding
The TIG welding process was first developed in the USA during the 2nd world war for the welding of aluminum alloys • The process uses a non-consumable tungsten electrode • The process requires a high level of welder skill • The process produces very high quality welds. • The TIG process is considered as a slow process compared to other arc welding processes • The arc may be initiated by a high frequency to avoid scratch starting, which could cause contamination of the tungsten and weld

TIG - Principle of operation

Tungsten Inert Gas Welding
USA: GTAW
Ceramic Nozzle

Welding Torch

Current Conductor

Tungsten Electrode Contact Tube

Shielding gas

Gas Shield Filler Wire Arc

Weld Pool

he.(ar. TORCH TORCH HOSE RETURN LEAD INERT GAS SUPPLY (Cylinder & regulator) FLOWMETER (graduated in ltr/min) . gas.expensive Sizes/types vary depending on current/application Flexible – may carry current. ar/he mixture) Argon/hydrogen for austenitic stainless steel To deliver correct gas flow (velocity) depending on welding position and joint configuration.steels Transformer/rectifier for AC/DC Inverters for AC/DC – more portable . cooling water.TIG power source POWER SOURCE 440v 50Hz 3 phase or 240v single phase input Transformers for AC – aluminium alloys Rectifiers for DC . Note that current actually flows from this lead Correct type for application.

Equipment for TIG Power control panel Power return cable Transformer/ Rectifier Inverter power source Torch assemblies Tungsten electrodes Power control panel Power cable Flow-meter .

Equipment for TIG Power source control panel Ammeter Start method Start/stop current AC balance 2/4 stroke Pulse ON/OFF Pulse frequency Remote control Welding current Postflow (Preflow) Slope up Slope down Background current Peak current Current type & polarity ON/OFF switch Courtesy of Lincoln Electric .

ARC CHARACTERISTICS Constant Current/Amperage Characteristic OCV Large change in voltage = Smaller change in amperage Volts Large arc gap Welding Voltage Small arc gap Amps .

large size. expensive. longer life for component parts . short life for component parts Water cooled: recommended over 150A. simple.TIG Torch Torch types: • • Gas cooled: cheap. complex. small size.

TIG Torch Tungsten electrode Torch cap/tungsten housing Electrode collet Collet holder Torch body Ceramic nozzle On/off switch .

g. Al) .TIG Torch Gas lenses Stainless steel wire sieve Thread for gas nozzle Thread for torch body • reduces eddies in the gas flow • extends the length of the laminar flow prevents contamination • highly recommended in case of reactive metals (e. Ti.

5 times electrode diameter Increase Vertex angle Decrease Bead width Electrode tip prepared increase Electrode tip prepared for for low current welding high current welding .Electrode tip for DCEN Penetration increase 2-2.

Electrode tip for AC Electrode tip ground Electrode tip ground and then conditioned .

The vertex angle is as shown AC DC -ve Vetex angle Note: too fine an angle will promote melting of the electrodes tip Note: when welding aluminium with AC current. type and vertex angle are all critical factors considered as essential variables. the tungsten end is chamfered and forms a ball end when welding .TIG Welding Variables Tungsten electrodes The electrode diameter.

Choosing the proper electrode Polarity Influence – cathodic cleaning effect .

aluminum alloys and magnesium New types: • Cerium: DC electrode -ve .steels and most metals • 1% thoriated + tungsten for higher current values • 2% thoriated for lower current values • Zirconiated: AC .Aluminum alloys and magnesium .steels and most metals • Lanthanum: AC .Tungsten Electrodes Old types: • Thoriated: DC electrode -ve .

Tungsten electrode types Pure tungsten electrodes: • colour code .green • no alloy additions • low current carrying capacity • maintains a clean balled end • can be used for AC welding of Al and Mg alloys • poor arc initiation and arc stability with AC compared with other electrode types • used on less critical applications • low cost .

yellow/red/violet • 20% higher current carrying capacity compared to pure tungsten electrodes • longer life . more stable arc • maintain a sharpened tip • recommended for DCEN.greater resistance to contamination • thermionic .Tungsten electrode types Thoriated tungsten electrodes: • colour code .easy arc initiation. seldom used on AC (difficult to maintain a balled tip) • This slightly radioactive .

12) • operate successfully with AC or DC • Ce not radioactive .Tungsten electrode types Ceriated tungsten electrodes: • colour code .grey (orange acc.replacement for thoriated types . AWS A-5.

black/gold/blue • operating characteristics similar with ceriated electrode .Tungsten electrode types Lanthaniated tungsten electrodes: • colour code .

brown/white • operating characteristics fall between those of pure and thoriated electrodes • retains a balled end during welding .good for AC welding • high resistance to contamination • preferred for radiographic quality welds .Tungsten electrode types Zirconiated tungsten electrodes: • colour code .

Choosing the proper electrode Factors to be considered: Electrode tip not properly heated Excessive melting or volatilisation Too low Welding current Too high Unstable arc Penetration Tungsten inclusions .

6. wide Yes Poor (e.4 mm/120A) .g.g. 3.Choosing the proper electrode Current type influence + + + + + + + + + - Current type & polarity Heat balance Penetration Oxide cleaning action Electrode capacity DCEN 70% at work 30% at electrode Deep.every half cycle Good (e.2 mm/225A) DCEP 35% at work 65% at electrode Shallow.2 mm/400A) AC (balanced) 50% at work 50% at electrode Medium Yes .g. 3. narrow No Excellent (e.

Shielding gas requirements • Preflow and postflow Shielding gas flow Welding current Preflow Postflow Flow rate too low Flow rate too high .

Special shielding methods Torch trailing shield Welding in protective tent .

Special shielding methods Pipe root run shielding .

TIG torch set-up • Electrode extension Stickout Electrode extension 2-3 times electrode diameter Low electron emission Unstable arc Too small Electrode extension Too large Overheating Tungsten inclusions .

no scratch! • ineffective in case of AC • used when a high quality is not essential HF start • need a HF generator (sparkgap oscillator) that generates a high voltage AC output (radio frequency) costly • reliable method required on both DC (for start) and AC (to re-ignite the arc) • can be used remotely • HF produce interference • requires superior insulation .TIG .arc initiation methods Arc initiation method Lift arc • simple method • tungsten electrode is in contact with the workpiece! • high initial arc current due to the short circuit • impractical to set arc length in advance • electrode should tap the workpiece .

Types of current DC • can be DCEN or DCEP • DCEN gives deep penetration • can be sine or square wave • requires a HF current (continuos or periodical) • provide cleaning action • requires special power source • low frequency .up to 20 pulses/sec (thermal pulsing) • better weld pool control • weld pool partially solidifies between pulses AC Type of welding current Pulsed current .

Pulsed current Pulse Cycle Peak Background time time current current • usually peak current is 2-10 times background current • useful on metals sensitive to high heat input • reduced distortions • in case of dissimilar thicknesses equal penetration can be achieved Current (A) Average current Time • one set of variables can be used in all positions • used for bridging gaps in open root joints • require special power source .

TIG welding parameters • • • • welding current penetration arc voltage weld width travel speed weld width + penetration tilt angle .

TIG Welding Variables Voltage The voltage of the TIG welding process is variable only by the type of gas being used. this is required to keep the tungsten electrode at the cool end of the arc. When welding aluminium and its alloys AC current is used . The higher the current the deeper the penetration and fusion Polarity The polarity used for steels is always DC –ve as most of the heat is concentrated at the +ve pole. and changes in the arc length Current The current is adjusted proportionally to the tungsten electrodes diameter being used.

argon and helium. high flow rates • More suitable for thicker materials and materials of high thermal conductivity. stainless steel. aluminium and magnesium • Lower cost. aluminium and magnesium • High cost. . The gas flow rate is also important.stainless steel. lower flow rates • More suitable for thinner materials and positional welding • Helium Argon mixes • Suitable for welding carbon steel. copper. though nitrogen may be considered for welding copper and hydrogen may be added for the welding of austenitic stainless steels. Argon (Ar) Inert • Suitable for welding carbon steel.TIG Welding Variables Gas type and flow rate Generally two types of gases are used in TIG welding.

1. 4. 3. Up-Slope control (Slope-In) Prevents burn throughs and the possibility of tungsten inclusions 3. 2. Pre-flow timer control Adjusts the time the gas and water valves are open 2.TIG Welding Variables 1. Post-flow timer control Adjusts the time the gas flows after welding . 5. Output control Welding current control 4. Down-Slope control (Slope-out) Crater fill and controls crater pipe and the possibility of crater cracks 5.

welding position as stated in the WPS . the required vertex angle and that a gas lens is fitted correctly. Check the electrode stick-out length and that the ceramic is the correct type and in good condition Gas type and flow rate Check the shielding gas is the correct type. or gas mixture and the flow rate is correct for the given joint design.Checks With TIG Welding The welding equipment A visual check should be made to ensure the welding equipment is in good condition The torch head assembly Check the diameter and specification of the tungsten electrode.

Safety Check should be made on the current carrying capacity. . Correct extraction systems should be in use to avoid exposure to toxic fume. or duty cycle of the equipment and all electrical insulation is sound and in place.Checks With TIG Welding Current and polarity Checks should be made to ensure that the type of current and polarity are correctly set. and the range is within that given on the procedure. Other welding parameters Checks should be made to other parameters such as torch angle. arc gap distance and travel speed.

Mechanised TIG • Cold wire no current is flowing through the wire no preheat simple equipment special wire feeders can provide continuos. intermittent or pulsed feed widely used on orbital pipe welding and tubeto-tube sheet applications • • • .

Mechanised TIG Hot wire • current is flowing through the wire wire is resistance heated nearly to its melting temperature when it is in contact with the weld pool • higher welding speed than cold wire • high deposition rate normally used in flat position • wire is usually fed into the weld pool behind the arc .

TIG typical defects Most welding defects with TIG are caused by a lack of welder skill. welding speed. i. current.e.e. or incorrect setting of the equipment. slope out) • Oxidation of S/S weld bead. gas flow rate. torch manipulation. or root by poor gas cover • Root concavity (excess purge pressure in pipe) • Lack of penetration/fusion (widely on root runs) . etc. • Tungsten inclusions (low skill or wrong vertex angle) • Surface porosity (loss of gas shield mainly on site) • Crater pipes (bad weld finish technique i.

Tungsten Inert Gas Welding Advantages • High quality • Good control • All positions • Lowest H2 process • Minimal cleaning • Autogenous welding • Can be automated Disadvantages • High skill factor required • Low deposition rate • Small consumable range • High protection required • Complex equipment • Low productivity • High ozone levels +HF .

Any Questions .

Tungsten Inert Gas Welding Questions QU 1. Which electrode polarity is considered essential for the welding of carbon steel? And give a brief description why QU 4. State the main advantages and disadvantage of the TIG welding process . Which electrode polarity is considered essential for the welding of aluminium? And give a brief description why QU 5. State the main welding parameters with the TIG welding process QU 3. State the tungsten electrode activators required to weld carbon steel and the light alloys QU 6. Give three reasons for the occurrence of tungsten inclusions QU 2.

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