The Xiris Blog

5 Welding Applications Where Angled Optics Optimize Monitoring

Posted by David Giannotti on Thursday, December 05, 2019 @ 03:01 PM

xvc-700-side-by-side-header-2

The XVC-700, the new weld camera from Xiris, features a unique flex design allowing for a “periscope” configuration of the housing. This means this camera can be mounted anywhere from 0-135° relative to the main body axis of the housing.

The range of applications where angled optics enable better placement of the camera are only limited by your imagination, but here are 5 we are sure you will find interesting:

1. Monitoring of ID Cladding in Small Diameter Pipe

By combining a shallow angle (less than 30°) with angled optics and the weld camera mounted under the welding torch and parallel to the axis of the pipe, the user can see the tip of the torch. Alternatively using an angle that looks past 90 degrees, the weld camera can be mounted beyond the torch tip and look back to get a clear, unrestricted view.

2. Orbital Welding (stud or Tube to Tube sheet)

A Weld Camera with angled optics can be easily placed to rotate with the orbital head, whether ID or OD, minimizing the radial space needed.

3. Continuous welding (Tube and Pipe Mills, Seamers, Orbital Welding, etc.)

Using near 90 degree angles, a weld camera with angled optics can be mounted vertically, allowing users to see the weld process while minimizing the footprint of the camera in the area around the weld head.

4. Seamers & Tube Mills      

In processes and equipment where optical length is critical, for example in the horizontal space of a tube mill set-up, an angled weld camera’s tilted optics allow for optimum positioning.

5. LSAM (WAAM) Robots

In additive manufacturing environments, weld cameras with angled optics can be compactly positioned to best monitor bead height.

Do you have a welding process where an XVC-700 with angled optics would improve your quality assurance practices? Contact us and get a complimentary consult from one of weld camera experts.

 

Topics: XVC Weld Camera, inspection

What Does Welding Sound Like? SMAW

Posted by Cameron Serles on Tuesday, December 03, 2019 @ 01:00 PM

“Most welding shop foremen who interview welders give them a weld test and know from halfway across the shop by the sound of the weld if that welder will pass the test.”1 This quote from GoWelding.org highlights how important sound is in welding. This is why our team at Xiris has added audio monitoring to our popular weld cameras.
SMAW- Audio in Welding

Since launching our audio package, we have been diving into audio monitoring in more detail, talking about how monitoring audio can benefit operators and what to listen for in GMAW and GTAW. Today, we’re looking—and listening—in more detail to SMAW, or stick welding.

Like GMAW, SMAW should sound like cooking bacon.2 If the arc sounds overly loud, your amperage might be set too high.3

To set up your welder, strike an arc and listen to the crackle of the rod. Adjust the power setting (amperage) until you hear the sound of bacon or eggs frying.2

It may take years for welders to amass the experience necessary to recognize what quality welds sound like. As you are welding, it is important to pay attention to the sound of your stick welds. Soon, you will be able to determine if you have a quality weld.

This video shows SMAW in action and shares what it sounds like in a variety of situations: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=akvv4ApYMVE.

 

 

Better Images. Better Decisions. Better Process Control.

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Sources: 

1http://gowelding.org/welding/stick-smaw/

2https://quizlet.com/125850644/welding-smaw-shielded-metal-arc-welding-flash-cards/

3https://www.millerwelds.com/resources/article-library/five-steps-to-improving-your-stick-welding-technique

Topics: quality control, weld camera, welding, weld monitoring, audio, SMAW

How To Engage Young Welding Apprentices

Posted by David Giannotti on Wednesday, November 27, 2019 @ 10:00 AM

 

Welding has a problem. We all know about it, but we often don’t talk about it.

First of all, the average age of welders is creeping up. In both America and Europe it is almost 60 years old, similar over much of the Western world. Even in China, with many younger welders who entered the work force in the past few decades, the average age of welders is increasing.

Secondly, for a generation growing up with computers, smartphones and video games, many young adults today are more comfortable using a keyboard than they are using their hands to make things, such as fabricating metal with welding. The reality is that a lot of youth are naturally streaming into disciplines that involve computers, in clean work environments, far away from the dirtier, more basic environment in which processes such as welding are done.

Thirdly, young graduates from technical schools want to be continuously learning, not only about their core technology, but about processes around it, to make their work more interesting and appealing.

So, what to do? Perhaps it is time to rethink how to engage young welding apprentices. Adding automation to a process is certainly a good first step to remove the more mundane aspects of a repetitive, difficult welding process. It introduces a component of technology that will certainly increase the interest level of those young students.

But maybe automated welding should be taken a step further. Perhaps the addition of weld cameras to a welding process will expand the interest of a younger crowd and better engage them. By having weld cameras on the welding equipment, you do not need an operator to be present right at the welding torch to monitor what is going on. Instead, they can be on the ground, remote from the welding process, using a computer with a keyboard to monitor and control the welding process, possibly even from a clean office environment! How cool would that be?



By adding automation and weld camera technology to the welding process, fabricators can better engage new welding apprentices entering the workforce to their welding roles with improved health and safety conditions, different ways to make their work more interesting and improved opportunities to learn. 

Topics: Education, Xiris, welding

Using Pseudo Color to Highlight Features in Welding

Posted by Cameron Serles on Tuesday, November 12, 2019 @ 11:45 AM

Weld cameras can produce color and monochrome images. Often monochrome images are selected as they provide the best resolution for a wide variety of applications. The monochrome images generated by the camera are often further processed to make the informational detail of the weld process more useful and interesting to the observer.

Usually, a tone mapping process is applied to the weld camera images to provide an enhanced image with maximum contrast for the user, such as what is done with images from the Xiris XVC-1000 weld camera. However, sometimes an additional technique called pseudo coloring can be done on the tone mapped image to provide additional visibility of key features to the user.

 

Pseudo coloring is when each grey level (or intensity value) in a monochrome image is assigned a color. The resulting image can make the identification of certain features easier for the observer, as the perceived difference in color space for the operator is bigger than between successive grey levels alone. Details such as the leading edge of a melt pool, the boundary between a torch and weld arc, the interface between the weld arc and the melt pool, or the texture of the melt pool can all be made more visible to the operator using pseudo coloring.


Monochrome Image from a TIG Weld

TIG Weld with Pseudo Coloring
Monochrome Image from a TIG Weld Same Image, with Pseudo Coloring

 

Why bother with pseudo coloring? You might think that your images look just fine in black and white, right? And they probably do. However, in some welding applications, adding color to an image can make it much easier to distinguish between different objects especially when they are almost the same level of intensity such as in the images above. Try it in WeldStudio™, Xiris’ software utility for weld cameras, to see if it helps.

 

 

Better Images. Better Decisions. Better Process Control.

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Topics: quality control, weld camera, High Dynamic Range, HDR, pseudo color

What Does Welding Sound Like? GTAW

Posted by Cameron Serles on Tuesday, October 29, 2019 @ 11:30 AM

To accompany the launch of Xiris’ new audio monitoring technology, we are continuing our series about sound in welding. So far, we have covered the announcement of our audio monitoring equipment, benefits of adding audio to your weld camera, and sound in GMAW

Today we are investigating sound in GTAW, or TIG welding.
GTAWGTAW is typically characterized by a high-pitched hum or buzz.1

The polarity of the electrical current—whether it’s AC or DC—affects sound in TIG. AC TIG is much louder than DC. As amperage increases, welding noise will also increase.2

At lower frequencies, you will hear a slow pulse sound as you weld. One operator described it as “Braaap, Braaap, Braaap.” As the power frequency increases, such as to 80-90 hz, the sound becomes “sharper:” “BRAP, BRAP.” With the frequency between 100-120 hz, the “brap” sound becomes a whine. At this point, the arc is moving much more quickly, going from positive to negative hundreds of times a second.2

As in GMAW, sound in GTAW can alert operators to mistakes or faults in their welding.

For example, a torch-to-workpiece angle greater than 20-25 degrees may cause a popping sound as well as poor weld quality.3 A high pitched buzzing sound can signify lower penetration of the heat into the parent material.4

An important consideration in monitoring sound in welding is the environment that you’re working in. Each shop or factory has its own unique acoustics. Some frequencies may echo and welding machines can seem very loud or sound different depending on where they’re located.

For this reason, it is important to spend time assessing your welds, monitoring your equipment and learning what a good weld sounds like in your facility.

Watch a video of welding aluminum with GTAW, and how the frequency settings change the sound: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XzsfBV6_vNY

 

Better Images. Better Decisions. Better Process Control.

Follow Xiris on social media for regular updates and welding videos!

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Sources: 

1https://weldtalk.hobartwelders.com/forum/weld-talk-topic-archive/welding-processes/12469-a-few-questions-on-tig

2https://weldingweb.com/showthread.php?23153-AC-TIG-Aluminum-Noise

3https://forum.millerwelds.com/forum/welding-discussions/3973-sound-of-tig-welding

4https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XzsfBV6_vNY

 

Topics: quality control, weld camera, welding, GTAW, weld monitoring, audio

Using Weld Cameras to Reduce Health Risks

Posted by Robin Montgomery on Thursday, October 03, 2019 @ 11:30 AM

High Dynamic Range (HDR) weld cameras provide clear images of a welding process including detail of the weld arc as well as the darker surrounding background environment, making it easy to monitor and control precise welding processes. Not only do weld cameras enable operators to see more detail of the welding process, by allowing them to see it remotely, they can improve the health and safety of operators on the job and reduce workplace costs associated with safety.

 

Common on-the-job risks that can be eliminated by removing the operator from the immediate welding environment include:

·         electrical shock 

·         "welding eye" (direct exposure of the weld arc to the human eye)

·         contact with weld spatter

·         injuries from moving or falling objects 

·         welding fume inhalation

 

Many of these risks can cause serious damage to a weld operator. It is proven that workers exposed to welding fumes are more likely to develop lung cancer than those who are not1. Adding a weld camera eliminates the need to be close to the welding process, significantly reducing operators’ risk. Using a high dynamic range weld camera can also reduce fatigue and stress, making the job safer, more enjoyable, and more appealing to existing and prospective operators.
Introducing a weld camera will also reduce costs that are associated with health and safety, such as:

·        workers' compensation insurance rates

·        employee health insurance rates

·        costs due to lost productivity

·      possible litigation

There are many other benefits to using a weld camera, but health and safety is such an important factor that cannot be overlooked. When operators are able to view the welding process in a safe, remote location, there are a multitude of positive results.

For more information visit our website or contact us!

 

Better Images. Better Decisions. Better Process Control.

Follow Xiris on social media for regular updates and welding videos!

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Sources:

1https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/world/more-evidence-welding-fumes-raise-lung-cancer-risk-11553186

Topics: quality control, weld environment, High Dynamic Range, safety, health, HDR, weld camera system, consistent

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