Gas Metal Arc Welding is a versatile process widely used in industry for a variety of applications. Despite all the process developments in the past decades, there are still applications where further process development is required. The Metal Beam process, which is a variation of pulsed GMAW, is able to achieve the same deposition rates, using different arc parameters that can be tailored to speciﬁc applications, depending on requirements. Along with process development, there have been control developments that further the automation of the welding operation. A key feature that automated welding equipment should have is the ability to track changes in joint geometry and compensate for errors in tool alignment. Advancing technology like high speed data acquisition and enhanced processor speeds enable welding controllers to observe and react faster than a manual operator allowing for tracking of ﬁllet and orbital weld joints. The developed algorithms can monitor process parameters and telemetry to detect changes in the groove position and then adjust the torch path automatically as required. The tracking works in real-time or in play-back mode where data from previous passes is used to guide the weld head on subsequent passes.
Liburdi groove tracking technology is currently used by a leading equipment manufacturer for fabrication of heavy vehicle frames, but is also being applied to orbital pipe welding, i.e. pipeline, for the oil and gas industry.