Welding is one of the most important industrial processes in the world. Here are the different types of welding in use today.
SHIELDED METAL ARC WELDING
Also known as “SMAW” or stick welding among professionals, this type of welding uses a “stick,” which is actually an electrode coated in a protectant flux. This electrode is attached to the end of a stick which is then used as part of a direct or alternating current in order to create the electric arc you might be familiar with. In this type of welding, the electrode will slowly melt away while simultaneously melting the metals that you are trying to join together. Also, the flux coating will release a gas vapour as the electrode melts and this actually results in a shielded environment in which the weld area is protected from contamination.
GAS TUNGSTEN ARC WELDING
Also known as “GTAW” or “TIG welding,” this type of welding uses tungsten (obviously) as the electrode for producing the weld. While the electrode aspect is similar to SMAW, the tungsten electrode is not consumed at all during the welding process, which is quite different from SMAW. Instead of eroding, the weld area is protected from atmospheric contamination from an inert gas (typically helium or argon). And, accordingly, “TIG” stands for “Tungsten Inert Gas”.
GAS METAL ARC WELDING
Also known as “GMAW” or “MIG” welding, this type of welding uses a wire electrode that is consumed as it is fed through a welding gun. While this happens, argon gas (or an Argon-CO2 mix) is sprayed over the welding puddle to act as an inert shielding gas and protect the fusion from contamination. This is the most common type of welding method used in DCM industrial maintenance settings because it happens to be both versatile and easier to use than other forms.
FLUX –CORED ARC WELDING
Also known as “FCAW,” Flux-Cored Arc Welding is similar to MIG welding but the special tubular wire is filled with flux. This flux might be sufficient on its own for protecting the welding puddle from contamination.
SUBMERGED ARC WELDING
Also known as “SAW,” this type of welding also uses a consumable electrode that is fed through the stick automatically. Also, SAW uses a characteristic cover of granular fusible flux made of silica, calcium fluoride, manganese oxide, and lime (et al).