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Clean Energy & RSW

By James Cruz on Thursday, July 1st, 2010


Here we go with the blog thing. I feel like I have a bit of a split personality. This is my first week blogging, but my third blog entry. I am an Engineering Team Leader currently leading three teams: the Resistance & Solid-State Welding team; the Non-Destructive Evaluation team; and the Friction Stir Welding team. I’ve already written blogs for the other two (check out those blogs at ____________ and _____________), but now I feel more “at home” because resistance welding processes are at the core of my background. Prior to coming to EWI, I worked at Honda for ten years.

My other two blog entries were about how EWI is working on projects in each of the technology groups that support advanced energy / energy saving initiatives. Since I have a nice little theme going – I suppose I’ll stick with it here!

One of the most common questions I get about the resistance spot welding process is “Why should I change to a servo-gun instead of a pneumatic weld gun?” There are a number of technical advantages to the servo actuated gun, but one great reason is that it is a greener choice than a pneumatic weld head. Pneumatic heads require extensive and elaborate air systems running throughout the facility. These air compressors require huge energy consumption to maintain a constant line air pressure. Since the system is prone to leaking, the pumps are running virtually non-stop, meaning that even during non-production time you are literally pumping dollars into thin air! Pneumatic guns also generally require lubrication, which gets exhausted into the atmosphere with each weld cycle.

Servo-guns only require energy when in use, and don’t leak it away during off-hours. The cost for servo-guns is also coming down dramatically as compared to when they were first introduced, making them a more attractive option financially. If you would like to talk more about the technical advantages to servo-guns, feel free to give me a call. I’m always happy to get back to my roots!

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