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Symposium highlights developments in linear friction welding

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23 March 2017
LFW Sympoisum delegates.jpg

The 4th International Linear Friction Welding Symposium, held 16-17 March 2017 at TWI’s facilities near Cambridge, UK, was a huge success. 

The symposium, the leading event in its field worldwide, brought together delegates from industry sectors including aerospace, construction and engineering, oil and gas, and power to share and discuss linear friction welding (LFW) developments with colleagues from academia, R&D organisations and machine manufacturers. 

With sessions on equipment development, industrial development and R&D, the symposium attracted 81 attendees and saw world-leading companies and organisations represented from across the UK, Europe as well as USA, Japan and Russia. 

The symposium included demonstrations in TWI’s friction laboratories on LFW as well as friction stir welding and refill friction stir spot welding. 

For the first time, the event featured a poster session with technology demonstrators shipped from overseas and the UK to complement TWI’s own display.

Feedback from delegates on the organisation of the event, quality of the presentations and demonstrations, and the professionalism and welcoming attitude from TWI staff involved has been overwhelmingly positive. 

Comments included, ‘I enjoyed meeting new people in the business’ with the main reason for attending the event ‘to network with others involved with LFW and learn from others’ experiences’. 

Another comment was, ‘Very interesting material presented throughout the event and a fantastic network of partners.’

Delegates enjoyed a symposium dinner at Trinity Hall, Cambridge on the evening of the first day, where delegates continued their discussions and networking.

Linear friction welding

Linear friction welding is a solid-state joining process pioneered by TWI that has become an established technology for several niche aerospace applications.

The method involves two parts being pushed together, one oscillating at a high frequency. This creates friction that heats the metals to a temperature at which they are able to join together. When the oscillation stops, the parts cool to form a forged-quality weld.

Linear friction welding materials has a number of advantages. It is a very consistent and fast process, taking as little as a single second to create a weld. Very little preparation of the surfaces to be joined is required: any imperfections and impurities are removed along with a layer of surface metal as flash. It requires no consumables, produces no harmful fumes that require exhausting, and due to it being a solid-state process, bypasses any of the potential issues associated with solidification, such as segregation or porosity.

TWI has been refining LFW for more than 30 years and continues to pursue opportunities for the technology. Our services in this area extend to the following:

  • Three LFW machines with an axial force capability of 250kN (25 tonnes)
  • Equipment and tooling design guidance
  • Development of production applications
  • Batch production runs
  • Weld quality assessment.
For more information please contact us.

For more information please email:


contactus@twi.co.uk