TIG stands for Tungsten Inert Gas, or: Wolfram inert gas. TIG welding is a gas arc welding process where an arc is maintained between a non-melting Wolfram electrode and the work piece itself. The weld charge and the electrode are protected by an inert gas. In ISO 4063 the process is referred to as process number 141.
How does it work?
In the TIG welding process, the arc is made by way of a high voltage discharge between the work piece and the non-melting Wolfram electrode that is surrounded by an inert gas. The plasma arc created in the inert gas takes care of the heat transfer to the work piece. The inert gas consists of argon or helium or a mixture of both. This also protects the weld charge and the non-melting electrode.
Depending on the application, an additional material may be used that is melted in the arc atmosphere. Regardless of the power applied, either more or less additional material can be used so that the supply of material can be regulated separately along with the desired heat contribution.
The figure below shows a schematic representation of the TIG process:
Most important process variations
- Welding with constant DC
- Used with materials without highly oxidizing characteristics. (Fe alloys)
- Welding with constant AC
- Used with materials having highly oxidizing characteristics. (Non-Ferrous alloys)
- Welding with pulsating AC or DC current
- Used for thin materials or welding in position
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