INVESTIGATION OF SPOT WELDING ELECTRODE TIP WEAR AND A NON-DESTRUCTIVE TEST OF PLASTIC JOINING IN THE AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY
The automotive industry is reliant on resistance spot-welding just as the sandwich making industry is reliant on bread. An automobile contains an average of 5000 welds. The quality of these welds is inspected and governed by certain standards. In order to maintain these standards there are different approaches to quality control. There are many factors that are accountable to a successful weld. The main factors are the voltage across the electrodes, the pressure applied by the electrodes at the interface of the metal sheets, the current applied, the surface condition and the composition of the sheets. The main problem in determining whether a weld complies with the standard is that the most reliable test is a destructive test, which not only destroys a potentially good weld, but it stalls the entire production line in order to perform the test. This is a process where the weld is taken apart sometimes with a chisel. Once the weld is dismantled the quality can be analysed. During the course of this thesis the chisel test, and other comparable tests were carried out. The following thesis presents an overview of electrode current selection and its variance over the lifetime of the electrode tip. This also describes the proposed analysis system for the selection of welding parameters for the spot welding process, as the electrode tip wears. Data from the practical tests is analysed using SORPAS Software Package in order to compare between real life practical tests, and theoretical simulations preformed in SORPAS. Reducing sparks caused during each weld is another requirement to prevent bumps on the bodywork that may cause further complications at later stages, this project will greatly improve productivity in the production line, since damaged tips can be identified and changed during the manufacturing process. The results show that at a pressure of 4.0bar productivity of welds that conform with the necessary British standards was increased three fold. A new type of non-invasive plastic bond testing is also investigated. This bond testing research was driven by the industrial need for a novel real-time non-destructive method of measuring both the quantity and type of material. Microwave sensors which monitor the change in permittivity of PF glue were developed for this purpose and successfully tested. These sensors have also been used to differentiate between different plastics.
views in local repository
downloads in local repository
The information is available from the following content providers: