Aerospace welding, also referred to as structural welding, is a technique used in the manufacturing of massive structures for commercial airplanes and spacecraft. Aerospace welding differs from conventional welding procedures in that the cleanliness of the welds is evaluated. Additionally, the welds are heated to high temperatures and rapidly cooled. These high-temperature welds are somewhat fragile, necessitating more care.

The Basics of Aerospace Welding

Aerospace welding is used to combine metallic components and structures. Additionally, it offers structural support. Aerospace welding employs several welding methods including resistance, gas metal arc, electron beam, and gas tungsten arc welding. Aerospace welding is not a new procedure, although its prevalence has increased lately. The advantages of aerospace welding over conventional procedures include enhanced productivity, shortened design time, reduced expense, improved sanitation, and the absence of welding seams.

The majority of aerospace welders work at airports or in aircraft factories. Typically, aircraft welders operate in warm, loud environments. Welders in the aerospace industry conduct several specific welding tasks utilizing heated metal. They produce high-tech items like aircraft, spacecraft, helicopters, rockets, and satellites.

The principal materials welders use include aluminum, titanium, steel alloys (including stainless steel), Inconel (an alloy of nickel and chromium), Chromoly (an alloy of chromium and molybdenum), carbon steel, copper, high-alloy steel, superalloys (such as Hastelloy), carbonized steel, aluminum nickel arc rod (ANAR), and several others.

Aerospace Welder Skills

Several skills are acquired throughout a welder’s career in the aerospace industry. All work requires quick thinking and problem solving on the spot. As a welder in the aerospace industry, you must be able to comprehend welding symbols and drawings, precisely follow directions and move quickly, employ and demonstrate good safety and work practices, utilize blueprints to calculate weld specifications, be familiar with welding aluminum, steel, and titanium, be able to weld, braze, and cut aluminum and structural forms according to specifications, and possess expertise in oxyacetylene gas welding.

A welder must also familiarize themselves with American Welding Society criteria and specifications, be self-motivated and effective at picking up new skills and procedures on the job, be able to utilize diverse torches and flame-cutting equipment, understand heat treatment and arc welding, and fully grasp industrial safety procedures.

If you are contemplating becoming an aerospace welder, you’ll be happy to know the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that employment of welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers will expand by 8% from 2020 to 2030. For more information on this topic, be sure to reach out to Dynamic Fabrication Inc today!