The Xiris Blog

Using Cameras to Monitor Electron Beam Welding

Posted by Cameron Serles on Friday, December 05, 2014 @ 09:57 AM

Electron Beam Welding (EBW) has evolved to become a highly effective welding technique for precise welding of complex parts in a variety of industries as diverse as high volume part production in the automotive industry to single batch processes in the aerospace industry. For such manufacturers, the welding process must meet very high quality standards that have become the norm in their industry.

Technology Overview: Electron Beam Welding (EBW) 

EBW is an automatic welding process in which a focused beam of high speed electrons is applied to two materials to be joined together. The workpieces melt and flow together as the kinetic energy of the electrons is transformed into heat upon impact under vacuum conditions to prevent dissipation of the electron beam.

To create the focused beam of electrons, a heating current is passed through a filament (or cathode) that causes it to emit electrons that are accelerated by applying a high voltage to the filament. The electrons are then attracted to an anode, or ground potential electrode, which has a hole in it through which electrons are allowed to pass as a steady collimated stream towards the workpiece. As a final step, the beam of electrons travels through a focusing coil, or electromagnetic lens, so that the beam can be focused to a fine point in order to achieve sufficient power density to melt and weld the workpiece.

Only certain materials can be processed by an electron beam in a vacuum, however, such as steel, aluminum and a few other materials with lower vapor pressure at their melting temperature.




Figure 1: The Electron Beam Welding Process


Essential advantages of EBW

Compared to welding with conventional open arc equipment, Electron Beam Welding provides numerous benefits to fabricators, including:

  • The ability to penetrate very fast into almost any metal, producing a deep but narrow weld that provides a very localized heat source, minimizing any deformations of the workpiece.
  • Filler material is usually not required for the welding process so that the metallurgical properties of the workpieces do not change.
  • There is no significant beam reflectivity from any metal surface on which EB works, therefore most of the energy makes its way into the material.
  • Ability to provide precise closed loop power control across a range of

One of the issues with EBW is the challenge of monitoring the process while the electron beam is active. The use and integration of a Weld Camera can greatly improve the productivity and efficacy of the process.  

Monitoring the Weld Bead

Because the electron beam melts the workpieces during the welding process, the workpieces re-radiate so much infrared and visible light energy that it is not possible to see the welding process with a regular camera. By using a High Dynamic Range Weld Camera with the ability to see an enormous range of brightness, such as the Xiris XVC-1000, the operator is able to properly monitor what is going on during the EBW process. This allows the operator to control material inputs and process parameters such as the alignment of the weld head to the seam or spot to be welded, or, to monitor the size and shape of the weld pool in real time. Process and quality control can be improved because the operator can continuously check the weld parameters prior to catastrophic errors developing.


To maximize efficiency of Electron Beam Welding processes, a Weld Camera with High Dynamic Range imaging capability is an essential tool for operators to observe the weld process before it moves out of control and causes defects in the final product.    


Graphic Courtesy of

Topics: weld camera, welding, electron beam welding

Success at Fabtech Atlanta for Xiris!

Posted by Leanne Sinclair on Monday, November 24, 2014 @ 12:06 PM

Fabtech is North America’s largest metal forming and fabricating event that occurs every year. Fabtech began in 1981 and had grown steadily since, this year alone the show featured over 27,000 attendees and 1,400 exhibitors. Xiris was very pleased to be one of these exhibitors, and was very excited to debut our new product, the Xiris XVC-1000 Weld Camera, at Fabtech in Atlanta, Georgia this past November 11-13th.

The Xiris booth featured two examples of the new camera system: one camera was installed on a laser beam delivery system that demonstrated how well the camera integrates into laser, plasma or electron beam welding machines; and the other camera was integrated to a high intensity LED light source that could demonstrate the ability to see a super bright object while able to image darker areas in its background, similar to an actual welding environment.


Xiris XVC-1000 Camera Integrated to Laser Beam Delivery System

The Xiris booth was in Hall C, which focused on companies exhibiting equipment for the Welding and Tube & Pipe industries. There were numerous booths specializing in welding equipment, and Xiris had weld camera systems for both Open Arc and Submerged Arc Welding demonstrated in a variety of other booths including: Lincoln Electric, Gullco, Irco, LaserMech, LJ Welding/Praxair, Red-D-Arc/AirGas, and ESAB. This display of the weld cameras inspired plenty of interest in the product line that kept the Xiris sales team very busy during the show!

Xiris is proud to partner with so many prominent companies, and respond to so much interest during the show. Many welding machine builders and laser manufacturers saw great value in integrating the Xiris Weld Camera into their processes and machinery. With small format size, high dynamic range capability and remote imaging, the XVC-1000 is a powerful addition to any welding process.


The Xiris Booth at Fabtech

After a successful show, Xiris returned with high hopes and prospects for the XVC-1000.
For more pictures of the show, please visit our social media pages!
See you at Fabtech Chicago 2015!

Topics: quality control, weld camera, weld inspection, Trade Show, new product launch

Xiris Partners with TPS WeldTech at Photonex

Posted by Leanne Sinclair on Monday, November 10, 2014 @ 02:00 PM

Xiris had the great opportunity to join TPS WeldTech at UK’s largest showcase event specializing in photonics and light technologies. Photonex was a large success, featuring an abundance of different light applications.

TPS WeldTech, distributor of Xiris’ XVC weld camera product line in the UK exhibited to promote the weld cameras. Xiris’ high dynamic range sensors used in the weld cameras provide a superior view of open arc welds making these cameras a unique product to exhibit at Photonex. The high dynamic range of the camera and high quality sensor was a rare and exciting promotion at this international exhibition.

The Processing & Packaging Machinery Association (PPMA) is one of the sponsors of Photonex and assists in partnering the photonics and light technologies industries with much larger industrial application groups. Xiris was asked to provide a presentation during the PPMA seminar session. Xiris’ Sales Manager, Cornelius Sawatzky provided a technical paper discussing the logarithmic sensor application used in weld cameras. Accompanied with video examples of various MIG/MAG, TIG and Laser welding operations the presentation provides excellent video demonstrations of the benefits of welding cameras in all environments, processes, and materials. These videos can also be found in the Xiris Resource Library on our website. Simply choose your welding process, materials used, power supply, and joint type and the Xiris Library will provide a crystal clear video example.


The full presentation is available here for free download! Including video examples

Xiris specializes in developing optical equipment used for process and quality control across a number of specialty industries. Xiris provides some of the world’s most dynamic manufacturers with the ability to detect, recognize and interpret quality defects in their manufactured goods.

Topics: weld camera, Trade Show, presentation

The XVC-1000 is the Perfect Tool for OEMs: Innovative, Rugged, Easy to Use

Posted by Leanne Sinclair on Tuesday, November 04, 2014 @ 02:00 PM

A common difficulty Original Equipment Manufacturers face is the integration of accessories into their existing automatic welding machine designs. There are numerous benefits for OEMs to add a welding camera to their existing welding machines, this small addition improves operator safety, production efficiency, and decreases scrap rate. However, finding the right camera to fit into an existing operation can prove to be very difficult.

OEM’s know the importance in ensuring quality and consistency in the equipment they provide to automate a welding process, but often don’t know how to best provide that for their end user customer. A welding camera can meet those needs by providing the operator with the ability to remotely view what is happening with the area around the weld head, melt pool, shielding gases and the weld head/weld seam alignment. By providing a good quality image that can see all the detail of the weld, the right weld camera that is easy to integrate provides an excellent Return On Investment (ROI) for the end customer.








Xiris Automation Inc. is pleased to announce the release of our newest generation of welding camera: the XVC-1000. The XVC-1000 is a small, easy to integrate, high efficiency camera that operates with a Gigabit Ethernet (GigE) interface. In addition, it combines a spectacular 140+dB High Dynamic Range capability, a full suite of welding-specific imaging software tools, and a host of unique features to provide unprecedented image quality of a variety of welding and laser processes. The functional design maximizes image quality and reliability with ease of integration including special features such as image triggering, general purpose I/O, image windowing capability, and a weld arc photodetector.

To request more information, or a live demonstration,
visit us at FabTech Atlanta booth C1667 this November 11-13 2014!
Or simply request an appointment here.

Topics: weld camera, fabtech, OEM, new product launch

Two Types of Weld Cameras to Help You

Posted by Cameron Serles on Tuesday, October 21, 2014 @ 01:02 PM

Xiris Automation Inc. designs inspection systems, or “machines that can see”. Our products are used for process and quality control and provide some of the world’s most dynamic manufacturers with the ability to detect, recognize, and interpret quality issues in their manufactured goods. These technologies are applied across many different industries to improve safety, efficiency and productivity. We have developed camera technology to help monitor both Open Arc welding and Sub Arc Welding processes which has significantly enhanced the welding industry.

Xiris View Cameras: Open Arc Welding

Welding cameras can make a drastic difference in manufacturing and quality control for Open Arc welding processes such as GMAW (MIG/MAG), GTAW (TIG), Plasma or Laser welding. By integrating a camera at the weld head, fabricators can improve the human interpretation of the weld quality by providing a better image than otherwise possible and therefore decrease the chances of human error. The Xiris View Camera for Open Arc welding (XVC-O) is a complete system that comes with monitor, software, and camera, and can be easily integrated to any automated welding process. Beyond the production line, the system can also be used as a training tool, inside and outside of the classroom. With video recording capabilities, the XVC-O allows instructors to record welds and defects for offline review, analysis and instruction. The result is a better tool to teach welding to more students, as well as a way to introduce a more consistent assessment and review process.


The XVC-O monitor display

Xiris View Cameras: Submerged Arc Welding

Monitoring Submerged Arc welding is less difficult than Open Arc welding processes because of the blanket of flux that covers the welding process. The blanket of flux used in Sub Arc Welding prevents spatter and sparks but ensuring the alignment and angle of the weld tip is still essential to ensure the quality of the resulting weld. In addition, monitoring the continuously fed wire is another feature that needs monitoring in order to ensure the consistency of pressure of the arc. The Xiris View Camera for Submerged Arc Welding (XVC-S) provides clear images of the weld environment, weld tip and feeder wire to the operator in order to more accurately control the parameters that make a good weld. It also removes operators from potentially hazardous work environments without sacrificing their ability to monitor the weld process.

Welding injuries are far too common in today’s work environment and any steps that can be taken to improve workplace safety as well as productivity should be taken. Just last year, a Texas-based company says an explosion on a Mexican oil platform off the Louisiana coast was caused by unsafe welding practices. This report followed not one, but four lawsuits against the company asking for $20 million each in actual damages, plus a total of $100 million in punitive damages*. Safety concerns such as these could be reduced with the introduction of a Xiris Weld Camera. Let us help you prioritize safety and efficiency.

The XVC-O comes in both a standard and advanced system, and can be easily integrated into a manufacturing line, or the classroom. To learn more about our products and services please visit our website or contact our sales team directly at

 *This information was collected from the following article:

Topics: weld camera, Welding Process, Sub Arc welding, camera, weld allignment, arc welding, accident

How to Improve Your Sub Arc Business

Posted by Cameron Serles on Tuesday, October 14, 2014 @ 12:59 PM

The submerged arc welding process is used in a variety of industries all that work with thick, heavy and expensive materials. Many of these industries also perform cladding, where weldment material is added to the base material to improve its wear resistance. In many cases, having a cladding process located near the sub arc welding process can increase the health and safety risk for operators who must monitor the welding process close by. Instead, a welding camera could be added to the submerged arc welding process (SAW) to assist the operator in monitoring the process remotely, providing a number of benefits:

1. Cost Savings

One of the first and most substantial benefits a welding camera provides to the SAW process is to eliminate an abundance of rework and set up time. By adding a camera to remotely monitor the welding process, operators can ensure that all welds are lined up correctly and make immediate adjustments if necessary while welding. This reduces scrapped material as well as any machine down time in order to reset the process.

2. Safety Benefits

Remote monitoring of the sub arc welding process provides health and safety benefits to the welding operators by:

o   Removing them from a high heat environment without having to compromise their monitoring of the welding process. By working remotely to monitor the weld process, the operator has a quieter, cleaner, healthier work environment while still being able to control the weld alignment and surrounding environment.

o   Removing them from dangerous monitoring positions. Some sub arc welding tasks require operators to monitor the weld process from immense heights, or tight spaces in order to ensure weld quality and process efficiency. A welding camera with a remote display screen allows the operators to view the weld in a less hazardous environment, improving employee safety without sacrificing quality.

Xiris View Camera for Submerged Arc Welding

The Xiris View Camera for Submerged Arc Welding (XVC-S)

3. Eliminates Failure Rates

As already mentioned, SAW involves a lot of costly, heavy materials, many that are used in industries such as shipbuilding. In this high demand, high quality industry, there is no room for failure or risk of low quality welds. It is absolutely crucial that every weld involved is durable, reliable, and of the best standard of quality. The addition of a weld camera would allow an operator to eliminate a possible failure, by monitoring the process as it occurs.

4. Automation Benefits

As the demand in industries such as shipbuilding, bridge-building, spiral pipe applications and green energy technology increases, the demand and expectations of the quality of SAW processes continue to rise. By using automation to improve the consistency and repeatability of SAW processes, fabricators can better meet the quality requirements of their customers. As more advanced technology allows for the manipulation of material, spinning and moving the weld as it occurs, this can make monitoring more difficult. The addition of a welding camera would allow the weld head to be easily installed to most automation equipment, moving with the material or weld torch as it moves.

Secondly, in terms of changing materials, sizes or processes in general, the addition of a welding camera would allow automation lines to changeover much more quickly through faster set ups. As the automation equipment is prepared to run again, the operator can speed the set up process quicklyprocess quickly, making adjustments on the fly so that there is minimal scrap or lost time when changeover begins

There are numerous benefits to adding a welding camera to a SAW process. With the ability to remotely monitor the position, alignment and operation of the weld tip, operators can reduce down time, increase productivity and improve weld quality.

The Xiris product line includes cameras that can be used in both submerged and open arc welding processes, and can be found on our website.
See the benefits yourself by adding a weld camera today!


Topics: quality control, Sub Arc welding, camera, applications, productivity

Shutter Selection: Improve the Image Quality of Your Weld Camera

Posted by Cameron Serles on Thursday, October 02, 2014 @ 10:30 AM

Recent advances in electronics technology have made it possible for cameras with High Dynamic Range capability to be used to capture images of welding. This allow fabricators to be able to view the detail of the weld tip, as well as its immediate environment (such as the weld seam and weld pool) to get better control of the welding process. Reliable visualization of the environment around the weld tip is necessary to control and adjust the welding process. However, in order to be able to obtain the best possible image quality of a weld, the selection of the most suitable shutter technology must be made. The camera shutter type determines how and when light will be recorded during a camera exposure, and therefore determines the quality and functionality of the image that is provided. There are two main shutter types used in capturing images of welding: rolling or global.

Rolling Shutter

A rolling shutter captures an image by exposing one line at a time, moving from top to bottom. The rolling shutter capture technique is commonly used in film and can go largely unnoticed in certain applications. However, when applying this form of technology to the welding process, where high amounts of light with pulsing and movement are present, the image quality suffers. The image below demonstrates a rolling shutter exposure of a TIG welding process. As the picture demonstrates, some lines of the image get exposed during a welding pulse where a lot of light is present. These lines appear brighter than the rest. Other lines get exposed when the welding pulse is off when less light is present, these lines appear darker than the rest. Over time, if the pulse frequency does not match the frame rate of the camera, the line pattern will appear to move down the screen, causing a distracting image pattern to the viewer. In some cases, as material and surrounding background move past the rolling shutter, different images and movements would be captured, providing inconsistent results on which to base quality judgements of the weld.



 Effects of a Rolling Shutter on an Image of a TIG Weld Process

Global Shutter

A global shutter captures an image by exposing all rows of the sensor to light at the same time. This allows large amounts of motion to be captured at the same time, without blur or distortion. This type of shutter is also easier to pair with external applications such as external triggering or matching the image acquisition to a pulsed waveform of a welding power supply. When partnered with High Dynamic Range imaging capabilities, global shutter image capture is the most accurate and ideal technique for monitoring welding processes that involve motion or rapid changes in brightness. The drawback however, is that a global shutter image provides slightly lower contrast than a rolling shutter due to the fact that there is less time to expose each pixel, so in some situations, the image quality may not appear as vivid to the viewer as those taken with a rolling shutter.


Advanced weld cameras such as the Xiris XVC-O partners both High Dynamic Range imaging capability with the choice of both rolling and global shutter capture modes to provide welding operators unprecedented image quality of their welding processes. By selecting the appropriate shutter technique, image quality can be optimized for the application.


To learn more about the Xiris XVC-O and other products,
please visit our website


Topics: weld camera, visibility

Xiris Presents at Pipe and Tube Houston

Posted by Leanne Sinclair on Tuesday, September 23, 2014 @ 04:23 PM

This past week, The Tube & Pipe Association (TPA) and the International Tube Association (ITA) coordinated the Pipe and Tube Houston 2014 Conference, where Xiris attended to present its WI2000p Weld Inspection System.  The WI2000p system is used to inspect welded tube and pipe immediately after the weld box for forming and weld defects with the goal of performing process control.  Xiris presented on the WI2000p and how it can detect certain defects found specifically in High Frequency and ERW welded tubing. The conference was attended by several hundred members of the tube and pipe community, as well as a variety of equipment vendors.

describe the imageInteractive Discussion Panel










Xiris also demonstrated the Xiris WI2000p Post Weld Inspection System at the conference’s table top exhibits.  Using actual tube samples from a variety of customers, the WI2000p’s ability to detect a variety of tube weld and forming defects, such as bead height, bead ratio, slope angle, deflection, mismatch, roll, freeze line, scarf width, and undercut.  Detection of all these critical defects was demonstrated as to how the WI2000p can assist operators in controlling their process.  The net result is to help tube and pipe fabricators decrease scrap rates, increase productivity and improve quality of the end product.

For more information about the WI2000p Post Weld Inspection system for tube and pipes, or to learn more about our other products and resources, please visit our website

Topics: Trade Show, safety, houston, pipe, tube, presentation, defects, conference, exhibit, vendors, fabricators, scrap, productivity

Xiris Exhibits at IMTS 2014

Posted by Leanne Sinclair on Thursday, September 18, 2014 @ 05:10 PM

Xiris Automation participates in many international trade shows. Our products have immense value across a number of markets, including welding, where we present our XVC-O Weld Camera to the Weld industry. With video demonstrations and expert explanations about how our weld camera can improve weld monitoring, trade shows are hugely beneficial to customer understanding of this technology.

Partnering with one of our large OEMs, ESAB Welding & Cutting Products, Xiris was privileged to exhibit the XVC-O Weld Camera for Open Arc welding processes. ESAB was one of only two major welding automation companies exhibiting at the International Manufacturing Technology Show. IMTS is one of the largest industrial trade shows in the world, featuring more than 2,000 exhibiting companies and 114,140 registrants.


ESAB showcased their pre-engineered robotic welding cell using a new tandem MIG welding process called Swift Arc LS. Xiris assisted with the ESAB exhibit by providing the Xiris XVC-O Weld Camera to demonstrate how the operator could view the welding process remotely. The weld camera was mounted on the robot and travelled with the weld torch to provide visitors a clear, live view of the weld arc. Xiris also demonstrated a live weld feed for visitors to see the software and dashboard view of the system (demonstrated above).

This is one of the many trade shows Xiris has attended this year, and will be attending many more! Watch for us at the Sheet Metal Welding Conference in Michigan, US, FabTech in Atlanta, Ga, US and the 5th Welding Busan Exhibition in Korea this November.

To learn about all of our events and tradeshows please visit our website and be sure to subscribe to our blog.

Topics: weld camera, Trade Show, manufacturing, IMTS, distributors, weld monitoring, integrated

Decrease Injuries, Increase Efficiency and Prioritize Workplace Safety!

Posted by Leanne Sinclair on Tuesday, September 09, 2014 @ 05:28 PM

The construction of large ship vessels is a very complex and hazardous trade. In order to fabricate these large structures, there are various positions and maintenance that needs to be completed for proper assembly. Unfortunately, this increases the risk of accidents. As many shipyards use sub-arc welding, this process involves operators to be suspended high in the air, or exposed to different gases and hazards.

In 2011, two workers were fatally injured on the site of a Singapore shipyard, when a powerful explosion was caused due to the build-up of pressurized air. Fortunately, other team members were inside the nearby building attending a safety briefing when the accident occurred. The explosion shook the entire stretch near Benoi Road, and the loss of the two workers was mourned by various media outlets.  

Sadly, these types of accidents are common in this area of work. The article of this accident is accompanied with a chart that demonstrates that in 2007 14.3% of accidents occurring at shipyards were due to fire and explosions, most commonly associated with welding. The graph below demonstrates a study conducted by the Ministry of Manpower in 2013 of the Workplace Injuries by Industry and Degree of Injury. You will see that Construction, Manufacturing and Marine trades have the highest amount of fatalities and are the most common trades using welding.



These studies demonstrate the demand for increased safety in all of these trades, specifically shipbuilding. These huge constructions involve a variety of complex conditions and trades that need to be completed with efficiency and reliability. Risking a worker’s life by adding hazardous factors to an already dangerous trade is unnecessary and should be avoided. In order to complete reliable and quality welds, it is important that it is monitored, but this does not mean the operator must be where the weld occurs. With the development of welding cameras, injuries and fatalities in this industry can be largely reduced.

Systems such as the Xiris XVC-S Weld Camera for Sub Arc Welding can be added to conditions commonly seen in shipyards. This small addition could have large benefits, and large decreases in the high number of injuries and deaths seen in this prominent trade. It allows welds to be monitored consistently, from a safe distance, which would increase worker safety and efficiency.


Is your shipyard safe? Are your welds consistent and the best quality you can provide? Can you risk any more lost product, lost time, or employee safety?

To learn more about how Xiris Weld Cameras can benefit your business, please visit our website.

Topics: weld camera, weld inspection, weld environment, weld safety, Sub Arc welding, safety, camera, weld allignment, visibility, accident, fatal, death

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