The use of robots has also spread to the process of welding. Using robots to weld has enhanced safety, increased accuracy and also reduced the duration it took to finish a single project. These are some of the reasons why robots are preferred in welding. Several industries now use these automated processes to catalyze the results they desire.
How welding Robot work
When robots are used in any industry, the first thing that is done is to customize them to fit that specific industry. The same can be said for robots used in welding. You’ll notice that the process of welding use tools that aren’t found in their manual.
Welding robots come with an arm capable of moving in three different directions, i.e. in the case of rectilinear types. Articulating ones have more planes. You will notice a wire feeder that transports filler wires to the welding robot. The end of that welding robot arm also has a torch that gets heated and melts the metal, thus enabling the welding process. The heating can go up to thousands of degrees, thus making this job most suitable for robots to avoid work-related injury.
One thing about welding robots is that a professional human operator is still needed to be on standby. That way, they can easily set other programs to change the direction of the arm. These operators are also required to initiate the robot’s welding process by pressing the necessary buttons.
As such, the robotic arm’s torch will get heated, and then it will melt the metal being fed to it and use the molten metal to conjoin with another metal.
The Process of Robotic Welding
Welding requires excellent skills and education. However, there aren’t enough welders in the welding industry to cater for the demand. According to the AWS (American Welding Society), there will be a shortage of welders of up to 45,000 by 2022.
So, what’s the solution?
Instead of allowing the work that would have been covered by these 45,000 welders to go pending or fall behind, hire welding robots. Not only will robots meet the market demand, but the precision and speed that comes with robots will ensure high-quality standard demands are met.
Automating the welding process also prevents wastage, and robots can easily be programmed to adapt to the different welding processes. Those processes include:
1. Plasma welding By Robots
This type of welding gives the most flexibility because its operator can easily alter the speed at which gas is passing through the nozzle and the temperature.
2. Laser welding For Robots
This is used in situations where many parts require accurate welding. Laser welding is more commonly used in joining small parts like medical components or jewellery.
3. MIG Welding
Also, going by the name GMAW (Gas Metal Arc Welding), MIG is a straightforward and fast method using high deposition levels. In MIG, there is a wire that continuously moves to the welder’s heated tip. This heated tip then melts the wire, making it possible for molten metal to drip to the base. The base is joined to another base with the molten metal.
4. Tig welding
If there is a welding application that needs high precision levels, TIG welding will be used. Tig welding is also known as GTAW (Gas Tungsten Arc Welding). It is the process whereby an electric arc pass between a metal base and a tungsten electrode.
5. Arc welding
This is a process where an electric car generates high heat that can even reach 6,500°F to melt metal. The melted metal is used to join different metallic parts together, and when it solidifies, the metal becomes one robust and stable connection. Arc welding is most suitable for projects that involve metals in large volumes.
6. Spot welding
Some materials are resistant to electrical currents. Such a situation is most common in automotive industries when automobile body parts need to be pieced together. In this instance, resistance welding variations are used to join thin sheets of metal in one spot.
7. Resistance welding
When there are projects that require heat-treating, the welding robots use resistance welding. In resistance welding, electrical currents are used to create lots of molten metal as they pass between two metal bases.
Manual or Robotic welding By Robots
Modern manufacturing still has enough room for manual welding. For those projects that need the help of experts to change the welding styles being used, manual welding is your best bet. Professional welders have the ability to change their operations as compared to robots which will not quickly adapt to any uncertain situations.
Since manual welding is still largely needed by many companies, professional welding is a career that still has life left in it. Considering the projections of skilled welders’ shortage, anyone having a welding certificate is almost guaranteed to find work.
What’s more, AWS will still remain in business even with the replacement of manual welders with welding robots. These robots will still need the help of certified operators in one way or another. Having these professionals around ensures that projects are correctly programmed, thus finishing work cost-effectively and quickly. The decision to use or not to use robots when welding solely lies in the type of project at hand.
Why use when welding For Robots
- Increase efficiency: Robots can work all day, every day, without the need to rest.
- Enhanced safety: Robots have safety measures put in place, thereby avoiding work-related injury.
- Better accuracy: Robots maintain the same standards throughout their operation.
- Less waste: Robots have increased precision, thus generating less waste.
- Low cost of delivery: Robots weld large volumes of parts in a short duration, thereby being a cost-effective option in the long run.
Considering the ever-increasing demand for cars and other metallic objects worldwide, there will be a rise in the need for fast welding services. Even though welding robots also have their con, like less flexibility and high buying cost, their benefits are unmatched. What’s more, their presence in the welding industry hasn’t resulted in a loss of jobs for manual welders. It’s safe to say that robots are the future of the welding industry.
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