Tungsten Electrode Selection - Gedik Welding

Tungsten Electrode Selection

What is Tungsten Electrode?

Tungsten electrodes, which ensure the welding process on the workpiece by carrying the current required for arc formation, stand out among the components in TIG welding. The selection of tungsten electrodes, which vary in current carrying capacity, arc characteristics, service life, re-ignition performance with different alloys, is important for welding performance.

Where Is Tungsten Electrode Used?

Tungsten electrodes, which are indispensable components of TIG welding, can be used for TIG welding of unalloyed and low alloyed materials, stainless and aluminum, depending on their types. Parameters such as the type of material to be welded and the type of current to be used in welding are important in their selection.

Tungsten Electrode Types and their Properties

Green (Pure) Tungsten Electrodes

While unalloyed, pure tungsten electrodes have advantages over other types of tungsten electrodes in terms of cost, they are used especially in TIG welding of aluminum and magnesium alloys. These electrodes with high arc stability are used with AC current.

Gray (2% Cerium Alloy) Tungsten Electrodes

Cerium alloy electrodes are particularly used for welding unalloyed and stainless steels. It can be used in both DC and AC current type. While it is more preferred to be used in DC current, it has approximately 35% more current carrying capacity than pure tungsten electrodes in AC current.

Although its service life is long, its ignition and re-ignition performance is quite high.

It is not radioactive. Therefore, it is more environmentally friendly than Thorium alloy tungsten electrodes.

Gold (1.5% Lanthanum Alloy) and Blue (2% Lanthanum Alloy) Tungsten Electrodes

Lanthanum alloy tungsten electrodes, which provide very high performance especially at low current values, are called Gold and Blue Tungsten Electrodes according to the amount of lanthanum they contain. Lanthanum alloy tungsten electrodes are not radioactive. Their service life is long and their re-ignition performance is high.

Lanthanum alloy tungsten electrodes, which are good for use in automation welding, are suitable for use in both AC and DC currents. It is preferred for welding of unalloyed and stainless steels.

Red Tungsten (2% Thorium Alloy) Electrodes

While it has a very high current loading capacity thanks to the thorium it contains and is highly resistant to oxidation and pollution. They are easy to ignite and form a more stable arc.

Thorium alloy electrodes contain a low amount of radioactive material. It is important for users to pay attention to the points in the SDS form of the product.

They are mainly used with DC current. Their service life is long. It is generally preferred for welding carbon steels and stainless steels.