A Welding Procedure Specification, or WPS, is essential to creating consistent, high-quality products with a confidence that they will withstand the expected service conditions. A WPS purpose is to detail proven welding parameters procedures to guide welders as they weld components. It can be thought of similarly to a recipe and includes any crucial information and details required to ensure a weld is the best it can be.
What is in a Welding Procedure Specification?
Welding Procedure Specifications are important no matter how experienced your welders are. They act as a safeguard to prevent welding defects, limit company liability and maintain the highest possible standards. Your WPS will contain proven and tested procedures that cover information such as:
- Proven way of welding a given material
- What joint setup works
- Techniques to employ
- Proven welding machine setting like amps, volts and travel speed
- Step by step processes to follow, including preheating requirements, which filler metals to use, and proven welding machine setting like amps, volts and travel speed..
- What the desired weld quality level is
A WPS be used as a benchmark when a company hires welders and welding operators. Once you have a proven process, that works then you can test welders using techniques that are consistent with your WPS.
Why You Need a Welding Procedure Specification
Beyond the desire to produce the best possible products, a WPS is also essential for compliance reasons. Under various Australian and international standards (including AS/NZS 1554, AS3992, AWS D1.1, ASME IX and ISO 15614,), some form of WPS is required to provide confidence that welds are produced repeatably compliant and satisfy the designs intent. Welding companies also have an obligation and duty of care to construct and operate a safe plant under the Work Health and Safety Act of 2011. A well-written WPS is an important part of ensuring compliance with the Act.
Standards Australia is the peak non-governmental agency responsible for developing national welding standards. The interpretation and application of standards is a learnt skill. Every company has different welds to complete and typically job specific Welding Procedure Specifications are required. If your company uses a weld that does not have an existing WPS, you are obligated to create one.
Tips on Writing a Welding Procedure Specification
There are several key steps to creating a compliant and well-written WPS:
- Outline all base materials and welding consumables required, including metal types grades, thicknesses and joint types.
- Develop a preliminary WPS (pWPS) that considers how the welding can be optimised to increase efficiency whilst minimising chances of weld defects
- Create a Procedure Qualification Record (PQR). This involves performing a weld based on the details in the pWPS and adjusting it based on the experience during welding the test coupon.
- Sent the test coupon for the necessary testing based on the welding standard required The test piece should be subjected to destructive and/or non-destructive testing before finalising the WPS.
- When conforming results are achieved by the testing, create the WPS using the essential variables which provides allowable ranges that compensate for variation in joint setup and different welders technique.
Contact Technoweld for Assistance with Welding Procedures
Technoweld can provide welding procedures to ensure your welds are compliant and create quality repeatable welds to ensure your welding is adequately managed and controlled. Technoweld are experienced industry specialists who research, develop, witness, run and document welding procedures specific to your project needs. Contact us today to find out how we can help!