Aircraft Welding repairs the design in such a way that it serves even in the most critical processes in the flight hours. An aircraft contains millions of parts and components embedded in a massive frame that needs to be maintained to enhance its service life. The servicing of aircraft makes it operational in the daily stress out flight conditions. Besides this, aircraft welding plays a vital role in its servicing and maintenance. This cost-effective method improves the life of each component and part of the aircraft.
Replacement of some parts of an aircraft is an expensive option, and in some cases, these parts are not readily available. Welding thus reduces the maintenance and servicing cost whereby avoiding the downtime for longer hours. Welding of aircraft is an old process performed for years. However today there are more advanced methods of welding.
Aircraft Welding Processes
A most popular type of welding designed for aircraft is TIG or GTAW. Gas welding, the most common method until mid-1950. However, later, electric arc welding replaces this method but still in use. Oxy-acetylene and electric arc are two types of gas welding processes. Fabricate aircraft by Oxy-Acetylene. Electric arc used for manufacturing and repairing of the aircraft.
GTAW Or TIG
Aircraft parts made of magnesium are welded using TIG, which was a simplified process compared to the 1940s process. Today, this aircraft welding method used for thick aluminum and stainless steel. TIG welding, however, holds importance in two applications, maintenance, and repair of aircraft.
Shielded metal arc (SMAW) and gas metal arc welding (MIG) are two of its types. Steel fuselage structures are welded using SMAW. MIG process preferred for manufacturing of aircraft on a large scale, and not used for repairing work. The quality of the weld it produces thus determines by destructive testing.
Why Is TIG Popular Aircraft Welding Process?
Different materials such as the steel, magnesium, niobium, titanium, nickel, aluminum, and cobalt used. Any mistake in considering the tolerance limit, dimensions and other considerations will lead to changes like cracking and distortion. Being irreversible hence require replacing of the part.
TIG welding designed for such applications. This process allows the accurate and exact control over the welds that results in the precise welds. Component replacement, patch welding, dimensional restoration, and crack repair are a few more applications of TIG welding.
Aircraft Welding Technological Advancement
Technology has improved the heat input, directional control, and enhances the capabilities and efficiency of three elements majorly. They are AC waveshape controls, pulsed DC output and arc starts. Therefore, this type of welding is popular.
The first step of TIG welding is arc starting. Advancement in technology allows the direct starting without any distortion and burning. The pulsed DC welding offer benefits like less cracking, prevention from burn and penetration control. High AC frequency allows adequate penetration, better welding of sections with irregular thickness and easily reach to the deeper part of welds.
New aircraft welding processes have contributed to a better quality of welds, thereby reducing the cost of welding. Industries thus use strong weld bonds in aircraft with essential components.