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Welding-control, automatic parameters monitoring, sensors, adaptive controls, closed loop feedback, real time parameter adjustment, charts, statistical process control in welds, variability, trend analysis, variable analysis, useful links, how to interpret results, joining questions needing answers: these are some of the items developed in this Site page for the benefit of interested readers. What is in here for me? Welding-control is one of the means employed to obtain successful welds. Of the different levels of quality checks devised for ensuring acceptable production results, Welding control is applied during welding (and may be manual or automatic), TESTING, usually destructive, is performed on a testpiece before starting production runs and at regular intervals thereafter, and INSPECTION is carried out after welding operations once the manufactured items are completed.A special case is that, implemented sometimes for spot welds, where a load test is performed on actual welds, with a force just capable of opening up defective welds but insufficient to damage good welds. Welding-control as used here is intended as meaning two different things, both having influence on the outcome of a welding operation. Welding control systems... The first applies to those Welding control systems designed to maintain an automatic operation working within a preset range of parameters in order to ensure repetitive good welding results. They are usually based on electronic instruments and sensors coordinated by suitable microprocessor technology. If correction of too large errors is beyond the scope of action of the equipment, the system usually sounds an alarm to alert the operator to intervene or to stop operation before much damage is done.
other nondestructive. thermal expansion and expansion rate. like pressure. workpiece thickness. Modern instrumentation. electrical resistance. where the operator intervention is now mostly limited to feed new work and to drive the Start command. Welding control was performed by simple devices in charge of monitoring or of counting one single parameter. and to Welding-control performance through statistical analysis of the data in order to detect trends which could signify drifting of the process that could endanger the continuing production outcome.The second meaning refers to the collection of data obtained after testing and inspecting several production runs. in order to decide if something of what described here might be applicable and useful to the projects on hand. and all results are integrated together by a software driven microprocessor in a system capable of altering some of those parameters in real time by closed loop feedback in order to provide at all times acceptable welds.. That is why with time Welding control evolved to the present state where many different parameters are individually monitored by independent sensors. like time. some destructive. By knowing what means are available.. Among the parameters checked by adaptive Welding-control sensors one can find current. or of or regulating another. force exerted by the electrodes on the workpiece. instantly differing conditions. But even when the process parameters were selected with care. This means that the cost of specialized . like mains voltage sudden drop or local metal surface dirty condition could have a major influence on the outcome of the process. and by asking for manufacturers' assistance. a high production class of processes quite adapted to automation. At the beginning of technological development. time (measured in the number of cycles of alternating current). energy. The use of adaptive Welding-control has improved considerably the level of performance enabling better quality with less inspection and testing. the attentive person responsible for a welding shop may become interested in investigating further into the Welding-control subject. This Welding-control trend is especially visible in RESISTANCE WELDING. voltage.
is called Seam Tracking and provides guidance and real time correction to follow the joint and produce the seam where it is needed and not adjacent to it. i. it drives costs up and may negatively . As mentioned before.systems can be easily covered by increased savings. before the process runs out of control.. In some mechanized arc welding operations.. a statistical study needs a database of past inspection results in order to monitor the present performance in the light of the historical record. Certain Welding-control systems perform automatic acquisition of running data to help in further statistical analysis of performance.. useful for automatic arc welding and for electron beam welding.. Another popular Welding-control. Controllers are available where single Welding-control parameters can be entered by the operator either following a prepared schedule or in response to specific queries supplied by the system.e. Some allow easy and self explanatory programs to be set up as schedules to be called for each job in turn. to keep heat input constant. SPC is usually implemented by preparing a set of charts. in order to maintain uniform weld properties. the percentage of defective welds as a function of time and other data as feasible and useful.. Statistical Process Control (SPC) identifies sources of parameter variation in the welding process and allows corrective measures to be implemented in time. that visually display in a quite intuitive way some useful resulting parameter. an arc voltage Weldingcontrol provides real time correction when the voltage tends to vary following distance changes between electrode and work. Other features. One should remember that a significantly better than needed quality by Welding-control is not only wasted. Not too much. Others can remind to the operator (after a preset number of welds) that time has come to perform simple maintenance jobs like electrode dressing.. Statistics.
. so that experts in the field should be hired for obtaining a guide in establishing routine statistical controls. It is up to the manager to decide if the current resistance welding operation warrants the costs involved in upgrading the machine Welding-control and/or of establishing a statistical program to improve performance and benefits. It must be recognized that serious statistical analysis of any process builds on a specialized body of knowledge that is not within the common tools of the trade of an industrial welding operation. by recording actual processing conditions. The purpose of these increased Welding-control is to save on costly production inspection.affect productivity and economic performance.