Welding in the arctic

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By Billing Canning, CWB Group

The first joint Canadian Welding Association (CWA) and International Institute of Welding (IIW) CanWeld Conference 2014 was a great success. The conference’s theme was “Welding in the Arctic” focusing on the best welding applications and advanced research topics associated with welding in sub-arctic climates.

“I am very pleased with the success of this year’s annual conference. Partnering with IIW and focusing on a specific theme, such as welding in the Arctic is something new for us, but it was one of the main factors why this conference had such a great turnout,” said Dan Tadic, Executive Director of the CWA.CWA executive director Dan Tadic gives the opening remarks at CanWeld Conference 2014 Welding in the Arctic

Well over 200 attendees gathered at the Westin Bayshore Hotel in the picturesque city of Vancouver, BC, where nearly 50 presenters from all over the world presented technical papers aimed at enhancing the welding industry as a whole, and move it forward in terms of welding in sub-arctic climates.John Marinucci, left, chairman of the CWB Group Board of Directors, presents Emad Assaad, engineering and welding specialist, Roll Form Group, with the Productivity Award. The 2014 Productivity Award was presented to Roll Form Group because of its investment and conscious effort to increase efficiencies and productivity of their operations.

“The presenters were first class,” said Tadic. “Personally, I learned a lot of valuable information and I hope all attendees did as well. The presentations were engaging, informative and ground breaking. This was the first time we had such a diverse group of presenters from all over the world. I am very pleased that we were able to get such great talent, it really boosted the appeal of the conference.”Indigenous entertainment was provided during the first joint CanWeld Conference between the Canadian Welding Association and the International Institute of Welding International Congress

The keynote speaker of the conference was Dr. Gregory Glinka of the University of Waterloo, who presented the Jaeger Lecture and later received a plaque from the IIW in recognition for his outstanding contribution to the welding industry during his career. Featured speakers also included: Chris Smallbone who presented an IIW white paper pertaining to the significance of creating a national welding capability. Another featured speaker was Dr. Duane Miller of Lincoln Electric who made a thorough presentation on a holistic approach to improving fracture resistance in cold temperature applications.

Dr. Patricio Mendez from the University of Alberta was one of those attendees and featured speakers who enjoyed every aspect of CWC14.

“This year’s CanWeld Conference was the best ever,” said Dr. Mendez. “All the presentations I attended were engaging, useful, and given by experts, many of them coming from around the world. The breadth of the topics was fantastic, ranging from pressing issues related to new regulations, to advanced technologies, to state-of-the art research developments.”Dr. Cécile Mayer, CEO of the IIW, Gary Marquis, president of the IIW, present Dr. Gregory Glinka, University of Waterloo, with the Jaeger Lecture award.

“The topic of welding in the Artic is of central relevance to Canada and many other Northern countries, and it set a precedent that will be continued internationally in the following years. One of the highlights of this conference was visiting the Seaspan shipyard where we observed how a $200 million investment in new equipment and infrastructure has transformed this shipbuilding company into a world class facility. Going to the shipyard and then back on the ferry to enjoy the dinner cruise, while networking with interesting colleagues was another highlight of the conference,” he added.

Dr. Cécile Mayer, Chief Executive Officer of the IIW, was also impressed with the lineup of guest speakers.

“I am thrilled that so many experts world-wide have committed to being a part of this experience and to enthusiastically share their knowledge on a variety of related topics,” she said.

Canadian Welding Bureau (CWB) Global Welding Engineer Ken Thorn said welding in the Arctic can pose inherent risks, such as Hydrogen Induced Cracking, so it’s imperative to follow proper welding procedures to minimize such issues.

“Welding steel that is cold can increase the possibility of hydrogen induced cracking. To prevent this, many codes and standards require welding procedures to be specifically developed for use at low temperatures. CSA Z662-11, Oil and gas pipeline systems, section 7.9.7 deals with welding at low temperatures,” he said.

Mr. Tadic said the core focus of the conference “brought nearly 50 leading welding experts from around the globe to discuss issues of common concern while working in subzero environments.”

Collaboration with other jurisdictions regarding best welding practices in subzero environments is very important to the overall success to expand the industry.

“We are very fortunate to be a representative body for Canada and working with the International Institute of Welding (IIW) to bring solutions through sharing technical knowledge about research and many issues faced by our industry. As an example, Finland has similar subzero climate that we deal with. We can learn from each other along from other countries that are in the Arctic region,” said Tadic.

CWB Group

Top image: Fronius

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