Gas Metal Arc Welding (GMAW) is also called Metal Inert Gas, or MIG, Welding. Hardfacing by arc welding is used extend the service life of industrial components, both on new components or to repair/refurbish worn parts. GMAW is the most common industrial welding process because of its versatility, speed and ability to adapt the process to robotic automation.
In GMAW or MIG, an electric arc forms between a consumable wire electrode and the workpiece, which locally melts the surface of the workpiece metal and joins it to the melted end of the wire. An inert shielding gas feeds through the welding gun, which protects the electrode and workpiece from contaminants in the air.
This process is often chosen because it creates high quality welds, which can be deposited much faster than with SMAW or TIG welding processes. It can be used with a wide range of alloys and operated in multiple ways.
The drawback of MIG is that it can’t be used in a vertical or overhead welding position.