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Reducing Helium Use in GMAW and GTAW on Aluminum - QuickView
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  • 1. QuickViewQuickView Reducing or Eliminating the use of Helium in GMAW and GTAW Applications on Aluminum Improve Productivity & Quality; Reduce Total Cost MATHESON QuickView Application Review and Summary
  • 2. QuickViewQuickView Helium Supply Update • Helium is a non-renewable resource • Helium supply is subject to variability – Helium prices fluctuate … and the future is unpredictable • For welding applications, alternatives to helium exist – Many of the alternatives offer advantages Now is the time to consider shielding gas alternatives that use less - or zero - helium.
  • 3. QuickViewQuickView Why use Helium? • Helium creates a high energy arc – High ionization potential (24.5874 eV) – Produces hotter arc (at higher voltages) • Produces a shallower, wider bead profile – Effect is proportional to Helium concentration • Can be advantageous on thicker aluminum sections • Useful on aluminum, magnesium, copper alloys • Helium when blended with Argon, CO2, and other gases, creates a mixture with blended characteristics Frequently Specified Applications: Pure Helium or mixtures containing Helium for Aluminum Mixtures rich in Helium – typically 90% - for Stainless Steel
  • 4. QuickViewQuickView Helium’s Disadvantages • Helium’s high ionization potential leads to: – Less stable arc – can lead to inconsistent results Disadvantages are proportional – Hotter arc – can lead to distortion & warping to Helium concentration • Helium can lead to penetration issues • Helium can increase spatter • Helium is a light atom and a less effective shield – Helium flow rate per unit of deposited metal is higher than other gases • Helium is subject to supply and price variability – The cost of Helium must be considered in high production applications Using more He is not the only choice; and is often not the best choice.
  • 5. QuickViewQuickView GOAL: Reduce or Eliminate Helium Use • Alternatives to Helium exist • Helium use can be reduced Consider mixtures or eliminated optimized for the • With excellent results: process and – Better weld penetration application. – Significant reduction in porosity – Increased travel speed – Improved arc stability; less spatter and smoke – Improved puddle and flow control (smaller droplet) – Reduced Heat Affected Zone (HAZ) – Less heat-related damage to base material – Reduced burn-through on thin materials – More flexibility to use other processes (spray and pulsed spray, in addition to short circuit)
  • 6. QuickViewQuickView GMAW / GTAW on Aluminum
  • 7. QuickViewQuickView Aluminum GMAW • Outdated: 100% Argon – Good appearance, but rapid solidification traps porosity – Oxides are not sufficiently cleaned – Poor, finger-style penetration – Very little arc energy
  • 8. QuickViewQuickView Aluminum GMAW • Imperfect solutions: Ar-He mixtures with 25%, 50% or 75% He – Improved penetration, reduced porosity – MATHESON Select® He-25 is a good alternative to higher He concentrations • Addresses the issues with 100% Argon • Uses less Helium than other options
  • 9. QuickViewQuickView Aluminum GMAW • MATHESON Select® APN-10 – Uses no Helium • Hybrid composition includes Nitrogen – MATHESON patent pending – Outperforms Ar-He mixtures • Higher energy, but more stable … at lower voltages • Improved penetration and shape; reduced porosity Porosity is a frequent • Reduced heat affected zone problem with 100% Argon
  • 10. QuickViewQuickView Exc l Aluminum GMAW and GTAW No usiv vel m el y rea ixtur our l be es s nef with . its. • MATHESON offers TWO Helium-free, Nitrogen-doped shielding gas mixtures – APN-7 GTAW, GMAW for Aluminum – APN-10 GMAW for Aluminum • APN-7 and APN-10 offer: – Excellent penetration – Reduced heat affected zone – Reduced porosity – Travel speeds at the same level or better than with Helium addition in traditional mixes
  • 11. QuickViewQuickView In Review … • Forward thinking leads to better solutions Thank you • Use of less – or zero – Helium can: for your – Produce better results time! – Improve cost per weld • Easily applied in GMAW and GTAW on Aluminum • We are here to support you • Learn more: contact your MATHESON rep or visit one of our stores • Find us fast at: www.MathesonGas.com/contactus.aspx