The Top Three Industries for Friction Welding

Welcome back to the Spinweld blog! As you’ve learned about the art and practice of spin welding, you’ve probably wondered: Who uses this anyway?

Spin welding is a popular practice and it’s being used more and more in a variety of manufacturing industries. Today, we’ll go over the top three industries that have incorporated friction welding into their manufacturing processes.

1) The Marine Industry

Friction welding has been used on marine equipment for decades. If you don’t live near the water or any major ports, you may not think much about it. But the fact is, boats carry about 80% of products to and from different geographic areas! So having ships that function well and last long is essential for much of our trade. The shipbuilding industry is a whopping $29 billion/year operation. But how do we keep it functioning effectively?

Enter spin welding! Many modern ships use spin welded components in their engines, pumps, motors, fluid controls, shafts, valves, conveyors, and hydraulic cylinders. Ultimately, this saves manufacturing time and money and allows the parts of these ships to be safer.

From small to large, many components used in shipbuilding are friction welded. Cruise ships are of course another popular method of travel. These structures are very tall but have a lower center of gravity, with the heavy machinery all located at the bottom. The efficiency and safety of these vessels require lighter-weight materials at the top. Since spin welding allows lighter metals to be joined, it’s possible to construct these ships with unusual weight distribution.

2) The Public and Private Transportation Industry

Friction Welding is popular with drivetrain assembles and other critical components in the Automotive industry. Noticing a trend? Spin welding has become a go-to resource for industries that get people and goods from point A to point B. Rail, automotive, trucking, busing, air, and water are very common spin weld industries. Public transportation alone is a $75.5 billion industry‚Ķand that’s just to build the vehicles!

Large freight haulers need to have stronger components that last under pressure, friction welding makes that happen. On top of its lightness and flexibility, friction welding makes all types of vehicles much safer. While public transportation crashes are rare, they carry significant consequences when they do happen, especially if there are numerous passengers on board. Spin welding allows for the use of bi-metal components instead of inferior metals, tubes instead of heavy steel bars, axles made stronger than conventional welding axles, which makes vehicles better able to survive the impact of a crash. While this model is primarily used for trains, it comes in handy for busses as well.

3) The Aerospace Industry

Friction welding is extremely popular in the aerospace industry because of it's ability to fuse dissimilar metals. Just like ships, aircraft are multi-functional in that they carry both passengers and goods. An average of 1.73 million people travel on airplanes each year in the United States, and planes are often responsible for special cargo and oversized items.

Mission critical components need to be reliable and friction welding is used throughout the construction of today's modern spacecraft. Besides carrying precious cargo, planes go through quite a bit of wear and tear in their lifetimes. Spin welding provides many solutions to keep aircrafts safe by reducing their weight. Since dissimilar metals can be joined using spin welding, parts can weigh less, provide greater strengths, and allow for efficient manufacturing. Parts can cost less and produce far less waste in the construction and repair process. Finally, friction welding creates stronger welds, as spin welding is a forging technique and in some cases, friction welding is the only solution. Conventional welding can be limiting, and the union is only as strong as the bead of weld and quality of the operator. This means planes can hold up against the natural elements for much longer.

But that’s not all...

While those are the top three industries for spin welding, the practice has a variety of uses. In fact, any project that needs increased flexibility, innovative design, and manufacturing savings is often a great place to find spin welding use. This can include cars, infrastructure projects, power supplies, sporting goods, industrial equipment, medical, military, oil and gas, power tools, agriculture, forestry, and special architecture products.

We’re prepared to learn what you need and help you make it a reality through the magic and efficiency of spin welding.