Coldwater Machine Company (Coldwater, OH) announced that they are an industry partner participating in the LIFT Consortium’s Processing and Properties Database for Refill Friction Stir Spot Welding of Aerospace Materials technology project. This project, being led by Boeing (Chicago, IL) and the Edison Welding Institute (EWI; Columbus, OH), will validate and further develop refill friction stir spot welding (RFSSW) using aerospace alloys. The outcome will be a standards database that includes process parameters and mechanical properties that help drive guidelines to provide product designers in the aerospace industry with the technical data to develop designs that can take advantage of RFSSW benefits.
“We are excited to bring our friction welding expertise and Spotmeld™ technology to this project, helping to drive the use of RFSSW, allowing the elimination of rivets in aerospace structures,” said Dan Barry, the vice president of sales at Coldwater, which is experienced in the rotary friction welding of a variety of dissimilar materials, as well as friction spot joining of 1000-8000 series aluminum. They are contributing to this project by testing RFSSW and documenting the data for joining aluminum grades to eliminate rivets and drive better process control for joining lightweight materials. The project is expected to be complete by October 2018.
Existing single-point joining processes (like resistance spot welding, laser welding and riveting technologies) needed to process lighter materials typically add weight or cost, result in low weld strength, or have porosity defects. Refill friction stir spot welding, such as SpotMeld technology, overcomes these issues and provides superior joint strength with a production ready technology that can be delivered as an EOAT on a robotics-based system or integrated to a wide variety of CNC solutions.
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