Electron Beam Welding Aluminum.
Electron beam welding is a fusion joining process in which the workpiece is bombarded with a dense stream of high velocity electrons, and virtually all of the kinetic energy of the electrons is transformed into heat upon impact. Electron beam welding usually takes place in an evacuated chamber. The chamber size is the limiting factor on the weldment size. Conventional arc and gas heating melt little more than the surface. Further penetration comes solely by conduction of heat in all directions from this molten surface spot. The fusion zone widens as it depends. The electron beam is capable of such intense local heating that it almost instantly vaporizes a hole through the entire joint thickness. The walls of this hole are molten, and as the hole is moved along the joint, more metal on the advancing side of the hole is melted. This flaws around the bore of the hole and solidifies along the rear side of the hole to make the weld. The intensity of the beam can be diminished to give a partial penetration with the same narrow configuration. Electron beam welding is generally applicable to edge, butt, fillet, melt-thru lap, and spot welds. Filler metal is rarely used except for surfacing.