FROM FERROUS TO FIBRES

AUTOMATED TOOLING, WORKING WITH NEW MATERIALS AND WHAT’S NEXT FOR WELDING

Times change, and so does technology. Thankfully, the fundamentals of superheating solids into liquids to bond separate components has been relatively unchanged in the past few decades, give or take a few new guidelines and materials. In last year’s Buyer’s Guide, forecasts anticipated the development of new materials developed by OEMs, a concerted effort to revive a supply chain deadened by nearly two years of deflated production, shipping and demand. A series of developments predicted to create stronger materials that would seriously impact the welding industry. Perhaps these estimates were premature— but we can assure you that new ideas in welding and innovation have not been forgotten amid the activities of this year. Advancements in automotive assembly are ongoing and do continue to push the limits of material science.

For all intents and purposes, an all-Canadian autonomous electric car, a Dutch car built from biodegradable materials and carbon fibre-bodied cars are closer to working prototypes than technology which is reliable and affordable enough to enter widespread assembly and distribution. You can now build your VW and Audi bonds to earn your certs in Canada, with the brand-new Volkswagen Group’s Canadian Collision Repair Academy (CCRA).

At the same time, these global impacts have also prompted serious developments in the automotive industry, except in ways that do not impact welders.

The prioritization of developing zero- emission vehicles by OEMs has minimal impact on auto body welding—assembly and frames may be constructed differently to house different components. Much like in previous years, OEM welding has seen something of a gradual change.

However, a report by Fortune Business Insights anticipates that arc fuse welding systems will show significant growth due to the technique’s flexibility, cost-effectiveness and enabling the use of high strength low-alloy materials across multiple industries. Resistance soldering is also expected to grow at a moderate rate, given its compatibility with autonomous production systems, reliability, efficiency and low-cost method. Change is inevitable—sometimes it just happens to be minor chances to optimize your workflow, rather than reinventing the wheel. Here are some tools to make the sparks fly.

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