Orbital welding is a specialized welding process where rounded objects, like pipes, are welded in a circular fashion around their circumference, usually using tungsten inert gas (TIG) welding. The need for a consistent weld around the entire circumference of a circular part requires extremely accurate welding. This need for a high level of precision makes orbital welding an ideal application for robots.
Several robotic orbital welding tools are available today. Some are portable clamp-like devices that are affixed to whatever circular material needs to be welded. Other, more permanent, orbital welders are installed on factory floors and the pieces to be welded move past them. Once the robot is put in contact with the product, it begins welding while rotating along the entire circumference of the circular object. This produces a consistent weld as it “orbits” around a precise path. This type of weld would be difficult and time consuming for a human.
If two circular pieces are to be welded together, the edges of the two surfaces often need to be cut at an angle, or beveled, to assure a consistent weld. The beveling process is one that specialized orbital welding robots can perform consistently with a high level of accuracy.
Specific applications for robotic orbital welding include jobs building water and power plants where high strength pipe and electrical conduits need to be joined with high-quality and high-precision welds. Human welding in these applications would be too time consuming, expensive, and prone to potentially dangerous imperfections. Often times, compact robotic orbital welders are the only option to weld hard-to-reach places on complex piping or electrical applications.
If you are interested in orbital welding robots, contact RobotWorx to help you decide which welding robot is right for your process at 740-251-4312.