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Laser/GMA hybrid welding of thick-walled precision pipes

: Gebhardt, M.O.; Gumenyuk, A.; Quiroz, V.; Rethmeier, M.

Welding and cutting 11 (2012), No.5, pp.312-318
ISSN: 1612-3433
Journal Article
Fraunhofer IPK ()

Thick-walled pipes made of steel are the basis of a large number of components in mechanical and installation engineering, e.g. for hydraulic components, in power station technology or in the petroleum industry. Particularly when strict positional and shape tolerances are demanded, the classical manufacturing process is chip-producing machining from the solid material. However, this is time-intensive and material-intensive. The laser/GMA hybrid processes with modern high-power lasers are a suitable alternative. With these processes, it is currently possible to weld components with a wall thickness up to approx. 15 mm with little distortion in one pass. However, in initial experiments, solidification cracks with longitudinal and vertical orientations in relation to the welding direction, so-called central line cracks, were established in welds on pipes. Within the framework of a research project, it was possible to determine the cause of the cracking and to find measures in order to avoid it. The technical boundary conditions could be complied with in this respect. The article gives an overview of the research project and the essential results.