TWI Industrial Member Report Summary 1024/2012
By C S Punshon and A Sanderson
Growing industrial interest in the use of electron welding (EB) for large scale thick section welding without the need for a substantial vacuum chamber has led to the development of a local vacuum EB welding head with a sliding seal in contact with the work piece. It was intended initially that a beam generator would be mounted on a small vacuum chamber and experiments carried out to determine the pressure range over which deep penetration could be maintained. Later a traverse system was to be installed to allow small scale test welds to be made. However, in view of the changing nature of Industrial Member demands and to support on-going, aligned development work on the use of mobile sliding seals for thick section plate and tubular components a change in emphasis in the programme was implemented.
The objectives of the project were to:
- Develop the local vacuum mobile sliding seal established in previous work to a position of repeatable and robust laboratory application.
- Establish a prototype small scale welding facility to assess welding performance.
- Align welding performance to identified large scale fabrication needs.