WELDING FUN FACTS
Lake Bluff, IL
WEC Welding and Machining LLC, offers you the knowledge, highly skilled professionals, and equipment required to maintain your power systems more efficiently and cost-effectively. We support the fossil, hydropower and nuclear energy sources of today and our visionary leadership is pioneering the power systems of tomorrow.
Part of Westinghouse Electric Company, WEC Welding and Machining is composed of separate affiliates, each of which has a special expertise in serving the utility industry.
Since its inception over 80 years ago, Caterpillar has grown to be the world's largest maker of construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, and industrial gas turbines. In partnership with our worldwide dealer network, we drive positive and sustainable change on every continent. We are proud to be a leader in building the world's infrastructure, and in enabling progress for millions of people around the globe.
With operations throughout the globe, ESAB is one of the world's largest producers of welding consumables and equipment.
ESAB conducts business in the following industries:
• Welding and cutting equipment
• Welding consumables
• Welding automation
• Cutting systems
NASCAR — Long before the rubber hits the road, roughly 950 man-hours are spent on welding and fabrication for each race car. Hundreds of parts are hand-cut, welded and machined, from the chassis and suspension to the drivetrain.
In 1961, General Motors installed the first industrial robot in history, the Unimate. Featuring a motorized arm that weighed more than two tons, the Unimate performed spot welds by following step-by-step commands stored on a magnetic drum.
Which famous comedian has a large antique car and motorcycle collection and employs welders regularly?
Jay Leno! His large collection includes models from the early 1900s to modern vehicles.
Explosion welding is a powerful welding process that can accomplish what many other welding methods can’t—it can join nearly every kind of metal together, even the most highly dissimilar ones.
Welding in space was first attempted in 1969 by Russian cosmonauts. Today, advances in welding technology have made it essential for projects like the construction of the International Space Station.
President Roosevelt, in a letter to Prime Minister Winston Churchill, boasted about the discovery of new welding techniques that enabled America to build ships with a speed unequaled in the history of shipbuilding.
The first car made with an entirely plastic body was assembled using ultrasonic welding. Even though plastic cars did not catch on, ultrasonic welding did. Ultrasonic plastic welding is an example of a friction welding process, which creates energy through high-intensity acoustic sounds that cause plastic pieces to vibrate together and form a bond.
Did you know that if two pieces of metal touch in space, they become permanently stuck together? This may sound unbelievable, but it is true. Two pieces of metal without any coating on them will form into one piece in the vacuum of space. This doesn’t happen on Earth because the atmosphere puts a layer of oxidized material between the surfaces.
More than 50% of U.S. products require welding. Do you know which of the following products rely on welding?
Answer: All of them
- Race cars
- Medical devices
- Oil rigs
- Farm equipment
- Cell phones
- MP3 players
What is a “fume plume”?
It is the visible column of fume that rises directly from the spot of welding or cutting.
The current record for the world’s deepest underwater dry weld, which is carried out in a chamber sealed around the structure to be welded, was set by Global Industries in 1990, at 1,075 ft. deep. But that is only half as deep as the world’s record wet weld, set by the U.S. Navy in 2005, at 2,000 ft. deep. Wet welding is performed underwater, directly exposed to the watery environment.
The earliest recorded welds occured in 3,500 B.C., the Bronze-Age. Pictures of welders and their ancient tools have been discovered in long-sealed Egyptian tombs!