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What Is Cold Welding?

  • July 16, 2020

Welding is a common fabrication process that involves the use of heat to fuse two or more metal parts. When melted is heated, it turns to liquid. The opposite surfaces of the metal parts will then mix together, resulting in a strong and secure connection once cooled. Not all metal fabrication processes, however, require the use of heat. Cold welding is an alternative form of fabrication that eliminates the need for heat.

Overview of Cold Welding

As its name suggests, cold welding is a fabrication process that joins metal parts at or near room temperature. Many people assume that metal parts must be heated in order for them to join together. After all, most fabrication processes do, in fact, require the use of heat. Cold welding is unique because it’s one of the only fabrication processes that’s performed at or near room temperature.

Also referred to as contact welding, cold welding uses vacuum pressure to join two or more metal parts. When two or more metal parts of the same material are directly exposed to each under the pressure of a vacuum, they’ll join together. This is the principle on which cold welding works. The metal parts are placed together while inside a vacuum chamber, at which point they join together. There’s no welding arc, torch or other heating device used. Rather, cold welding lives up to its namesake by eliminating the need for heat. It’s performed at or near room temperature.

The Benefits of Cold Welding

Cold welding offers several benefits. Since it doesn’t use heat, it allows the metal parts to retain their physical properties. Heat-based fabrication processes, on the other hand, result in physical changes to the joined metal parts. To weld two or more metal parts together with heat, they must be heated to the point where diffusion takes place. Diffusion of their atoms results in changes to the metals parts’ physical properties. Specifically, the metal parts become weaker and more ductile. Cold welding doesn’t have the same effects. It allows the metal parts to retain their physical properties.

Cold welding is also cheaper to perform than traditional heat-based welding processes. Heat requires energy to produce, and energy costs money for manufacturing companies. While the initial setup cost for cold welding is more expensive than that of heat-based welding processes, it’s cheaper to perform in the long run because it requires less energy

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