Welding is an industry with lots of promise, lucrative compensation, and a huge variety of different jobs. Whether you’re already a welder, are considering a career in welding, or are just interested in some unique facts about this metal joining process, you’re in the right place!
In this blog from Vern Lewis Welding Supply, we’ll discuss a few interesting facts about welding that you probably don’t know! Read on and enjoy.
1. Welding Has a History That Reaches Back Thousands of Years
“Forge welding” is the process of joining two pieces of metal by heating them both, then hammering them together. This process originated in the Bronze and Iron Ages in both Europe and the Middle East – it could have been used as far back as 3,200 BC!
2. Modern Arc Welding Originated in the Early 1800s
Today’s modern welding process originated with Sir Humphry Davy in 1800, and Russian scientist Vasily Petrov in 1802 – these men discovered the continuous electrical arc that’s still used in welding today.
In 1881 and 1882, Nikolai Benardos and Stanisław Olszewski created “carbon arc welding” – the first modern arc welding method, which led to the use of metal electrodes and other advancements in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
3. World War I & World War II Were Critical for the Advancement of Welding Technology
During World War I, many military powers were studying welding to determine which methods would provide the best results for military machinery and equipment, resulting in the first welded ships and airplanes, as well as advancements in bridge-building and more.
Welding technology continued to advance in the 1920s with the advent of shielding gas. Like World War I, World War II led to lots of advances in automatic welding, alternating current, and welding fluxes that led to advances in welding technology. Gas Tungsten Arc Welding (GTAW) was perfected in 1941.
4. Welding Is Important For Plastics, Too!
Welding isn’t just used to join metal. It can melt and join plastics, too – and is used in the automotive and electronic industries. Ultrasonic welding is a common method in plastics – it uses high-frequency sound waves that heat up plastic molecules and force them to bond with each other for a tight, seamless joint!
5. Welding Has a Significant Role in Our Daily Lives
The craft of welding is crucial in our society and it’s utilized across many industries. It’s estimated that half of all products require welding as part of the manufacturing process! From cars to buildings and even computers, welding is a vital component to many of the products we use today.
6. The First-Ever Industrial Robot Was Made for Welding
How important is welding in manufacturing? The first-ever robot used in manufacturing was built by General Motors to perform spot welds on cars in 1961 – using step-by-step commands built into a large magnetic drum attached to the 2-ton machine!
7. Welding in Space Was First Done in 1969 by Russians
Russian cosmonauts from the Soviet Union welded the first metal in space in 1969 on the Soyuz 6, creating welds with electron beam welding, plasma arc welding, and arc welding. They reported that these welds were “just as strong” as Earth-based welds.
Another interesting fact – during the mission, Cosmonaut Valeri Kubasov almost burned a hole through the hull of the Soyuz 6 Living Compartment – which could have resulted in catastrophe for the project. Luckily, though, this dangerous situation was avoided.
Get All the Welding Tools & Supplies You Need From Vern Lewis Welding Supply
We hope you’ve enjoyed this roundup of interesting facts about welding. And if it’s time for you to get back to work, Vern Lewis Welding Supply is here to help. We have a huge range of welding gases, materials, and essentials at great prices. Take a look at our products now, or contact us if you have any questions or need more information.