Fraunhofer IPK

Institute for Production Systems and Design Technology

Arc Welding

From thin sheet metal to the thickest steel – technological innovations in arc welding open up entirely new fields of application for an old and familiar technique.

Steel, container and apparatus construction are as reliant on arc welding as modern off-shore techniques. The characteristic feature of arc welding is the electric arc between the electrode and the base material. In pace with the changing requirements of industry, arc welding technology has continually been advanced and refined, opening up ever greater fields of application.

One decisive trend is the welding of particularly thin sheet ­metal, an area whose previously notorious instability has now been resolved by lowering the energy input per unit length. On the other hand, bundling the energy of the electric arc offers a highly promising approach to the welding of thick-walled metal as the high plasma pressure makes for excellent fusion penetration characteristics.

Analysis of material transfer in the welding process is another key research field of the experts at Fraunhofer IPK with major relevance for the manufacturing sector. Evaluation of process management and its impact on the metallurgy of heat-sensitive materials facilitate identification of the optimal fabrication parameters for our customers‘ products.