Submerged Arc welding or (SAW) is a method of welding where “base metals are joined by forming an electric arc between the workpiece and an electrode”. In Submerged Arc Welding, heat is supplied for the weld through an electric arc that passes between a wire electrode and the pieces to be welded together. The welding arc is obscured, or submerged, under a blanket of powdered flux. The flux protects the weld from spatter and sparks. No shielding gas is required and no water is involved. One thing to note about the SAW process is how it is able to protect the weld from contaminants in the atmosphere.
What Metals Is SAW Most Useful for?
The process of SAW is ideal for thicker sheets of metal, although it is possible to work with thinner sheets. Some examples of metals used during the SAW process include low and medium-carbon steel, low-alloy high strength steel, tempered steel and various other types of stainless steel. When working with low alloy steels, it is important to pick the correct filler metal and flux to achieve the best result. Other types of metals that have been welded experimentally are copper alloys, nickel alloys and uranium.
What Industries Are Best Suited for Submerged Arc Welding?
Because of the efficiency and economical benefit of the submerged arc welding process when used with long welds and thicker plates and the top quality of welds that result from SAW, the process is used most commonly in large welding projects. This may include shipbuilding or in the railroad industries for railcar fabrication. Other uses are off- shore oil rig welding and the construction of wind turbines! Large oil and gas tankers use SAW in their construction as well.
Advantages of Using the Submerged Arc Welding Process
There are many advantages to the SAW process which include:
- It is safe for the welder since there is no spatter, no arc flash, no fumes, and no radiation.
- It results in a weld of superior quality.
- Since there is no spatter, it is easy to clean up after the welding process is com-
- The process can be automated easily for greater efficiency.
- Generally, it is possible to recover at least half of the flux.
- There is no need for edge preparation if the material to be welded is less than 12
Disadvantages and Limitations of SAW
As with any welding method, there are some disadvantages and limitations to using the SAW process. The most important ones to be aware of include the following:
- The welder is essentially welding blind since the weld is submerged under the flux and not visible. This makes it impossible for the welder to evaluate any de- fects or even the quality of the weld. There may be some equipment, such as a light beam, that can be added to overcome this disadvantage to some degree.
- Welding can only be done in a flat or horizontal position.
- A poor-quality flux may lead to porosity.
- SAW cannot be used to weld aluminum, magnesium, or zinc alloys, or cast iron.
Get More Information About SAW From Arizona’s Leader in Welding Supplies
We hope you found the information about Submerged Arc Welding helpful! If you have any questions about this welding process our team of professionals at Vern Lewis Weld- ing Supply are here to help. You can contact us online or stop by one of our eight locations throughout Arizona.
- https://www.keenovens.com/products/flux- details.html#:~:text=Granular%20flux%20used%20in%20welding,protects%20against% 20sparks%20and%20spatter.
- https://www.hobartbrothers.com/resources/technical-articles/submerged-arc-welding- on-low-alloy-steels-an-overview-of-filler-metals-and-flux/
- https://fractory.com/submerged-arc-welding-explained/ https://primeweld.com/blogs/news/submerged-arc-welding-an-overview