Backing refers to a material that you place at the root of a welding joint. Its main function is to facilitate a complete joint diffusion while supporting the melted metal of welding. For different uses in the industrial segments, welding can be carried out in a one-sided (single-sided) or two-sided (double-sided) process, depending on the inside material you choose.  Ceramic back welding is one of the most popular examples of welding procedures. Produced through a process of heat-treating kaolin powder and other minerals, this type of welding is a versatile option to be used in various applications. Learn more about this welding process by reading seven facts about it below!

Related: The Use of High Quality Kaolin in Ceramic Industry

1. Ceramic Backing Contains a Mixture of Various Minerals

Produced by sealing resistant ceramic at high temperatures, ceramic backing actually contains different mineral mixes. Some of the most popular ones include Al2O3, SiO2, Fe2O3, and TiO2. When they are melted in the heat, those minerals will produce a glassy slag, forming the underside of the weld seam. At the same time, they will also seal the seam against air access, turning themselves into neutral chemicals in the weld pool. 

One of the best ceramic products for backing is usually composed of natural inorganic substances, including kaolin, talc, alumina, and magnesia. They are well mixed and heat-treated at temperatures between 1,350 – 1,400 degrees Celsius. The process results in shock-resistance properties unaffected by rapid heating and thermal cooling cycle during the welding process.

2. Ceramic Backing Has a Number of Excellent Characteristics

Because of its mineral properties and heat treatment procedure, ceramic back welding offers several excellent characteristics to support its industrial application. First things first, this type of welding is waterproof, making the structure resistant to water drop from mechanical and natural causes.

Ceramic back is also rich in anti-acid, anti-corrosion, and anti-chemical properties. For this reason, the application of ceramic back will not cause any changes during the welding process. At the time of welding, its properties won’t also produce a violent reaction to the steel.

3. Ceramic Backing Materials are Suitable for Various Industrial Purposes

Ceramic backings are traditionally used in industry segments, including shipbuilding, marine facilities, as well as plant engineering and other steel structures. However, as the field of industrial works developed throughout time, the use of ceramic backing also broadened increasingly.

These days, the welding process of ceramic backing can be applied to a number of construction and fabrication works, including machine construction, in-pressure vessel fabrication, and general steel construction. It is also considered a helpful portion in building tanks and bridges for public use.  

4. Ceramic Backing is Available in Two Main Options

The application of ceramic back welding is based on two different forms. The ceramic backing is available as single ceramic segments with an average length of 10 to 15 cm. This form is used by placing it in metallic rails, then attaching it to the workpiece using magnets or other fixtures.

Suitable to be used with the flux-cored wired, the single segment of ceramic backing mainly consists of CO2 gas shielded one-side welding. Its wide applications include shipbuilding, bridges, steel structure, and several procedures in the chemical industry.

Another alternative to using ceramic backing is in the form of ceramic blocks with an average length of 2 cm. This form is presented on a flexible aluminum foil with an adhesive edge. Therefore, it can be stuck to the underside of the weld seam. Because of its characteristics, this form of ceramic backing is specially designed to weld manholes or handholes.

5. There are Several Techniques to Use Ceramic Backing in Welding 

When it comes to the application, the welding process of ceramic backing can be done in different techniques, mainly related to the techniques of one-side welding. There are at least three main techniques to use: submerged arc, automatic welding, and CO2 semiautomatic welding.

Submerged arc refers to a common process of welding which involves the continuous use of consumable solid and tubular electrode with metalcore. As the name suggests, this process will submerge the molten weld and arch zone to protect them from any atmospheric contamination. 

Meanwhile, automatic welding is performed by using the welding equipment automatically and continuously. This process makes use of a particular welding machine which is in line with the concept of factory automation. 

The last technique, CO2 semiautomatic welding, combines arc welding and CO2 gas as the material. During the process, the gas is transferred from the welding torch’s nozzle to the weld pool’s shield.

6. Ceramic Backing Comes With Different Procedures for The Application

The use of ceramic back welding for industrial purposes should be in line with the correct procedures. That being said, there are several rules to follow when it comes to welding ceramic backings.

One of the rules is taking the properties into account if you aim to achieve the best result. For instance, dense ceramic backings with low moisture content are considered ideal for welding fine-grained steels which are highly strong. This is because such kinds of steel require weld metals with very low hydrogen content.

Moreover, if you want to use ceramic backings for outdoor welding, it is advised to apply one-sided welding instead of the two-sided process. This procedure is carried out at the construction site by welding the inside of the component. Therefore, the weather conditions will not play a role in damaging the whole construction.

7. Ceramic Backing Offers a Special Economic Advantage

One of the main reasons why ceramic backing is popular as a welding material is the economic advantages it offers. Ceramic backings are usually used in industry segments that have an objective to keep a low-cost budget. This procedure is proven to have a lasting connection to build various constructions, from industrial to professional use.

That concludes some interesting facts about ceramic back welding, from the backing’s content to its application procedures. With the new knowledge you just read, you can take a step further in using ceramic backing for welding while following its suggested procedures.