Narrow Gap Welding, Laser Cladding and Hybrid Welding

H. K. D. H. Bhadeshia

These photographs were all taken at CSIRO in Australia. Narrow gap welding is a high productivity process which exploits a special torch which is only 8 mm in width and can reach deep in grooves, allowing very thick plates to be joined using few weld passes.

In laser cladding, the laser is the heat source which melts a filler material which overlays a component. In this case, a power plant component which needs to be wear resistant.

In the hybrid plasma and laser method, the plasma melts a powder which the laser then fuses on to the surface of a component. The major energy source is the plasma. The method allows for high efficiency coating of large areas.

The narrow gap welding torch developed at CSIRO Woodville.
Laser cladding in progress.
The hybrid laser/plasma welding equipment.

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