What is Welding?
Posted .June 08, 2015

Welding is a fabrication or sculptural process that joins materials, usually metals or thermoplastics, by causing fusion, which is distinct from lower temperature metal-joining techniques such as brazing and soldering, which do not melt the base metal. A filler material is often added to the joint to form a pool of molten material (the weld pool) that cools to form a joint that can be as strong as the base material. 

The Welding is the base process to be able to create any form of metal fabrication or to repair broken metal parts.

There are different welding methods that are chosen based on the material to be welded or the process like the following ones:

  • Shielded metal arc welding (SMAW) - also known as “stick welding”, uses an electrode that has flux around it.
  • Gas tungsten arc welding (GTAW) - also known as TIG (tungsten, inert gas), uses a non-consumable tungsten electrode to produce the weld. The weld area is protected from atmospheric contamination by an inert shielding gas such as Argon or Helium.
  • Gas metal arc welding (GMAW) - commonly termed MIG (metal, inert gas
  • Flux-cored arc welding (FCAW) - almost identical to MIG welding except it uses a special tubular wire filled with flux
  • Submerged arc welding (SAW) - uses an automatically fed consumable electrode and a blanket of granular fusible flux.
  • Electroslag welding (ESW) - a highly productive, single pass welding process for thicker materials between 1 inch (25 mm) and 12 inches (300 mm) in a vertical or close to vertical position. 

While often an industrial process, welding may be performed in many different environments, including in open air,under water, and in outer space. Welding is a hazardous undertaking and precautions are required.

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