Raised on a diet of computer games and X-Box, GenY welding apprentices have no trouble in adapting to learning manual skills on this newly released Fronius virtual welding training simulator.
The arc and weld seam, with all the right sound effects, are virtual creations but are a much safer alternative than facing a 2000°C live arc for the first time.
According to manufacturer Fronius, virtual welding reduces the material-intensive sessions needed when training welders on "real" welding equipment, resulting in an estimated 25% savings in time, space, materials, gas, filler material and energy.
Fronius, for 60 years the world leader in the development of welding equipment and technology, says the virtual welder is a more cost-effective way of teaching welding, a safer alternative to traditional methods and better for the environment with less waste and reduced emissions.
The system caters to all levels of welding experience starting at beginner level where the trainee receives visual and audible prompts of the correct torch position and speed to help them learn quickly.
The trainee's weld is recorded and can be replayed showing a 'ghost' of the correct torch position which also assists learning. A score is given for the accuracy of the weld performed with the top score displayed just like a computer game.
Sensors in the torch, work piece and helmet keep track of the torch and trainee's head position, detecting even the slightest hand movements and transmits these to the virtual world.
The virtual weld is displayed on the 3D glasses in the trainee's helmet as well as the unit's touchscreen display and can even be projected onto a large screen or LCD monitor for all to see.
As the trainee guides the torch along the sample work pieces they mentally process the visual and audible signals to determine whether the welding speed, torch distance and angle are all correct.
The "training workshop" comes either as a stand-up terminal or as a mobile case that is easily transportable to the training location.
Dave Smith, Manager SMENCO Pty Ltd, Australian distributors for Fronius, said the virtual welder had created a lot of interest from the TAFE and training sector.
"At half the cost of now-superseded training simulators on the market and with the very latest in computer technology it also represents very good value," he said.
SMENCO | Welding Equipment
SMENCO knows welding and has the experienced people to service the welding equipment we sell.
That's what makes SMENCO one of Australia’s leading distributors of welding equipment, consumables and associated welding technology from around the world.
Among other leading international brands, SMENCO is the national distributor for Fronius welding equipment and Castolin Eutectic – both recognised as leaders in Welding Technology and Wear Solutions, Messer and BugO pipe welding systems as well as BOA Bore Repair Systems.
With the addition of Bohler Welding Consumables, T-Put (another Bohler brand) and DWT pipe preparation and cutting products to their range, SMENCO is now a key one-stop shop for the pipeline welding industry.
Based in Melbourne with offices in Sydney, Brisbane and Perth the people at SMENCO have an enviable reputation for knowledge, experience and commitment to their customers that puts the company at the forefront in this industry.
SMENCO company trained and experienced field staff are backed by a comprehensive national Distributor Network to provide customers with first class service that’s never far away.
Our customers, old and new, are always welcome to visit any of our branches around Australia.