The Xiris Blog

Weld Safety: Before and After

Posted by Margaret Montgomery on Friday, May 18, 2018 @ 01:37 PM

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, welders and cutters "have one of the highest rates of injuries of all occupations." [1] 

safety before+ after larger

                              BEFORE                                                                       AFTER                                   Before installing a weld camera, welders are often perched at unsafe heights, giving them a poor view of their welding activities. 

Welders Work in Precarious Positions

Many welding activities are done at unsafe heights, while the welder attempts to monitor and control the welding process. The moving machinery around them forces them to work in small, constrained working areas- which is often dangerous and uncomfortable for the operator. In these conditions- behind a helmet and perched above the welding process- welders miss important details in the welding arc, which can lead to mistakes and inaccuracies that are costly and timely to fix. Not only are these conditions a safety risk, but they make it harder for welders to ensure that they execute a high quality weld.

Weld Cameras Give Welders an Eye Into Detail

Xiris Automation weld cameras enable workers to perform a weld without leaving the ground. Our solutions give welders a consistent image quality regardless of the angle of the weld. They can view multiple images of the weld from leading, trailing or side views of the weld process. 

 

Don't pay for accidents, prevent them using machine vision technology. 

 

If you are interested in learning more about our company and products, please contact us here.

 

[1]“Welders, Cutters, Solderers, and Brazers.” U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 13 Apr. 2018, www.bls.gov/ooh/production/welders-cutters-solderers-and-brazers.htm#tab-3.

Topics: weld camera, weld safety, arc welding, mig welding, weld camera system

Rugged Cameras for Tough Weld Environments

Posted by Dean Zhao on Tuesday, April 24, 2018 @ 11:16 AM

Tandem MIG Welding - Environmental Concerns?  Not everyone was as confident as we were that our XVC-1000e weld cameras would last in this welding environment.

But they did. 

In fact, installed over three years ago, two Xiris XVC-1000e weld cameras were installed in a tandem MIG welding operation.  Over the past two years, they have been operating 24 hours per day, 7 days per week in some of the harshest MIG welding conditions amidst extensive smoke, fumes and weld spatter.

We are happy to say that the cameras are still going strong!

2018_4_24 _ Rugged Weld Cameras for Tough Weld Environments.jpg

The cameras as they were when they were first installed

 

2018_4_24 _ Rugged Weld Cameras for Tough Weld Environments_One Month.jpg

The cameras after one month

 

2018_4_24 _ Rugged Weld Cameras for Tough Weld Environments_3 Years..jpg

The cameras 2 years later – still running, still going strong!

 

The Xiris XVC-1000e cameras are equipped with a rugged industrial housing that allows the camera to be protected from ambient dirt, smoke and fumes.  Equipped with optics with motorized focus, integrated LED lighting, replaceable spatter window and cooling chamber, the Xiris cameras can withstand some of the most rugged welding environments!

Topics: weld camera

Monitoring High Amperage Welding on Aluminum

Posted by Justin Grahn on Tuesday, March 27, 2018 @ 02:32 PM

Aluminum welding needs to be performed typically "hot and fast." When using automated welding equipment, it is very challenging to get the process parameters correct. To aid in automated aluminum welding processes, a weld camera can be used to monitor for process variations that could cause a poor weld, including:

  • Burnthrough: Higher thermal conductivity and lower melting point of aluminum alloys can easily lead to burnthrough. Even on thicker material, welders have to carefully monitor that welding current high enough to penetrate the weld joint adequately does not cause burnthrough.
  • Cracking: Aluminum TIG welds often have a tendency to crack if there is not enough filler metal to change the weld chemistry to make it less crack-sensitive.
  • Weld Shape: A good aluminum weld will be flat to slightly convex in shape. If welds are ropey or convex, it is usually an indication that not enough energy was provided to the weld and cold procedures or undersized equipment was used.
  • Heat Affected Zone: by monitoring the size and shape of the HAZ, operators can reduce how much the base metal melt, reducing the opportunity for stress cracking;
  • Shielding gas: In thick aluminum welding, monitoring shielding gas size, shape and color can indicate its chemistry. Altering the chemistry can vary the heat input, changing the weld root width penetration, and reduce porosity.
  • Weld discoloration: may indicate metal oxides are cooling outside of the shielding gas range on the base metal, increasing the possibility of contaminants.
  • Oxide layer: if oxide layer has not been adequately removed in the weld arc, contaminants could migrate into the weld, causing porosity or cracking.
All these phenomena can be seen by a trained operator when remotely monitoring the aluminum welding process with a welding camera. To achieve best quality of image, a monochrome weld camera can be used at low exposure rates to produce the best image because the aluminum weld arc is so bright, offering better contrast and dynamic range than a color camera.

 2018_3_27 - Monitoring High Amperage Welding on Aluminum with a Weld Camera

Image of Aluminum welding with a Monochrome camera,

at extremely low exposure

 

Topics: weld camera, Aluminum, High Amperage Welding

Watching a 1,000,000 Watt Plasma Arc!

Posted by Justin Grahn on Tuesday, February 27, 2018 @ 01:17 PM

Usually Xiris Weld cameras are used to monitor open weld arcs of many kinds of processes, including plasma welding processes, where the power settings are usually in the range of a few hundred Watts of power.

So imagine when presented with the challenge of monitoring a one million Watt plasma arc! This is exactly what Xiris was asked to do – mount a camera to see such a powerful arc as part of an industrial process. We were not sure how well the camera would respond to the plasma arc as it was so hot and generated such intense bright light that even the dynamic range of the XVC-1000 weld camera may not be sufficient to properly image it.

When setting up the camera, we had to mount the camera far away from the plasma arc, at about 6 ft. (2 m) away, while monitor the entire process in a completely different room. The plasma arc was so powerful that our camera would shake when the arc was activated. Even from a protected room, the noise that the plasma arc generated seemed like standing next to a jet engine.

We were happy to discover that, even with such a powerful light source, the Xiris XVC-1000 weld camera was able to capture clear images of the high-powered plasma arc. The images were good enough to see sufficient detail in the arc for research staff to analyze the behavior of the return arc remotely, without having to be close enough to the plasma source to create hazardous work conditions.

2018_2_27 - Watching a 1,000,000 Watt Plasma Arc

An Actual Image of a 1,000,000 Watt Plasma Arc!

 

Topics: weld camera, weld monitoring, Plasma

Xiris is Growing!

Posted by Catherine Cline on Tuesday, February 13, 2018 @ 11:33 AM

In 2017 Xiris saw business growth of more than 40% over the previous year. This growth was due in part to the large increase in automation throughout the manufacturing industry, an increase in metal additive manufacturing in the aerospace industry and a new focus on employee training, health and safety for welding processes.

North American Industry saw the highest number of robots delivered in 2017, with twenty-seven thousand delivered in the first nine months, according to Machine Design magazine. The largest installations of robots came from the automotive components and metals manufacturing markets with food and consumer goods close behind. The machine vision market also saw a growth rate of 14% in 2017 with 14% of those being vision systems.

The Xiris XVC family of weld cameras have become critical tools in advancing weld automation processes across the board, particularly in the growing markets mentioned above. The Xiris weld cameras become the eyes of the robot and enable operators to safely see the weld process from start to finish.

In order to keep up with this growth, Xiris is also expanding. We have added a number of new employees in all areas of the company. We now have a Sales Manager in Dusseldorf to address increased demand in Europe. We have also increased staff at our head office in Burlington in all areas of the business including software/hardware design and development, production and product support. With these added resources we feel well positioned to meet growing demands and look forward to continued growth and success in 2018 and the coming years.

Thank you to all our great customers and partners for a great 2017!

Xiris personnel.jpg

 

Topics: weld camera, welding automation, Machine Vision, Robotic Welding

Video: The solar eclipse seen through a weld camera!

Posted by Mike Lundy on Thursday, August 31, 2017 @ 01:02 PM

The day of the recent solar eclipse was a fun one for us at Xiris. It was also a chance to show off the High Dynamic Range (HDR) capabilities of our weld cameras.

Xiris Weld Camera.jpg

One of the great advantages of state-of-the-art HDR cameras is their ability to capture both the super-bright light produced by a weld torch and the important detail in the surrounding dark background, and we realized that capability would give us an excellent view of the eclipse. All we had to do was take a camera out of the box and aim it—no special filters needed to view the breathtaking sight.

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We set up outside of our office and started watching high-contrast images (about 140 dB of signal range) of the event on a monitor hooked up to our XVC-1100 camera. We all enjoyed the show, and before long, so were folks from surrounding offices, who made their way over to view with us. We even had the pleasure of a visit from Pam Damoff, a Member of Parliament from the Oakville North - Burlington district, who appreciated the chance to see what a Xiris camera can do.

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It was a perfect opportunity to illustrate the power of High Dynamic Range imaging. It was also a nice break from the normal office routine!

To see for yourself how we set up and the high level of light/dark contrast we were able to capture, take a look at this short video.

 

Topics: weld camera, High Dynamic Range

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