No matter what line of business you are in, be it industrial, hospitality, manufacturing, fabrication, food and beverage, pipelines are used to safely transport everything from water, sewerage, gases, oils and fuels, and high-pressure steam for power generation – so, basically, no pipeline, or a faulty pipeline… no product, no business!
Depending on the application, various types of steels are used to manufacture pipelines, varying in composition from carbon steels to chrome-molly steels that can handle high temperatures in power generation plants.
It is therefore critical that welding procedures are developed and qualified for all pipe welding applications in accordance with the International AWS, ASME, BS and EN codes. These procedures must be strictly adhered to and welders should be qualified to do the welding.
Pipe welding is conventionally done using tungsten inert gas (TIG) welding for the weld root and the hot pass. The joint is then usually filled by stick welding, otherwise known as manual metal arc (MMA) welding.
Traditionally only highly skilled welders are used for pipe welding applications due to the stringent quality requirements and the high risk of damage and loss when something goes wrong.
At Afrox, we offer a wide range of welding gases, consumables and equipment to support pipe welding applications. A well-defined support structure exist to advise and assist customers with equipment, gas and consumable requirements in order to complete the job at hand.
The Miller PipeWorx series of equipment is an example of one of the latest advanced pipe welding solutions Afrox has to offer. Miller PipeWorx comes in two variants; PipeWorx 400 suited to workshop conditions and the PipeWorx 350 FieldPro ideally suited to site work, as it does not require separate control cables. It sends all communication signals through the welding cables, making the system as robust as a basic stick welder.
What makes this equipment special? Well the Miller PipeWorx system eliminates the need of incorporating various processes in the welding of pipes by allowing the welder to complete the entire weld with the metal inert gas (MIG) welding process. How is this possible? The PipeWorx offers two advanced MIG (GMAW) arc welding control options. These are; regulated metal deposition (RMD) – an electronically controlled modified dip-transfer mode output solution for root-pass welds; and ProPulse – an open arc pulsed solution for fill and cap passes. Through this process, TIG-quality welds can be achieved with the MIG process. This effectively removes the need for high-level skills for pipe welding, while simultaneously improving quality and productivity.
As part of Afrox’s commitment to improving welding standards in South Africa, Afrox has already developed welding procedure specifications for carbon steel pipes of various sizes. We are now moving on to qualifying procedures for more exotic steels used in the industry. This will prove to be a game changer in terms of welding quality, productivity and skills in the pipe welding application.
Want to know more or have a problem we can help with? Please use the comment section below and our Afrox blog experts will be delighted to assist!