Beyond Welding: Argon’s Contribution To Metal Processing


Argon, classified as a noble gas, possesses distinctive characteristics that play a pivotal role in metal processing. Weighing 1.38 times more than air and having low ionization energy, Argon becomes an important element impacting various metalworking processes.

Argon’s unique properties allow it to easily form electric arcs, a concept that is pivotal in procedures like metal cutting, where precision is paramount. The gas’s ability to concentrate weld bead penetration into the base material improves the efficiency of metal processing and the overall manufacturing process.

Argon’s Uses In Metal Processing

Metal Cutting

Argon is a core player in metal cutting. Its inert properties allow it to provide a controlled environment that significantly improves the precision and quality of metal cuts. Acting also acts as a shielding gas, safeguarding the metal being cut.
Besides its protective function, Argon enhances the efficient removal of molten metal generated during cutting operations, resulting in a clean and precise outcome, minimizing the risk of oxidation and contamination and maintaining quality.

Metal Annealing

In metal annealing, Argon also takes on the role of preventing oxidation during the heating and cooling phases. This non-reactive atmosphere preserves the integrity of the metals. This function, in addition to Argon’s ability to reduce brittleness results in the metal retaining its structural integrity, thereby displaying greater strength and resilience.

Additive Manufacturing (AM)

The need to construct metal pieces in a controlled environment, limiting the entry of any potential contaminants into the materials, is one of the primary concerns in metal Additive Manufacturing. The atmosphere created by inert gases, such as Argon, is inert. This means that the atmosphere is stable and unreactive. A stable atmosphere makes it possible to build components that conform to the precise specifications needed for metal parts used in the automotive and aerospace sectors.
Additive Manufacturing techniques, like Directed Energy Deposition and Electron Beam Melting, can easily be performed when Argon is present, eliminating the chances of contamination from other pollutants.

Heat Treatment

Argon’s inert properties also come into play in the heat treatment of metals. It safeguards the desired metallurgical properties of the process. Without Argon, the absence of a controlled atmosphere can lead to metal oxidation, compromising the integrity of the materials. This, in turn, results in diminished quality, reduced durability, and potential structural weaknesses in the treated metals. Using Argon for heat treatment should not be considered as an option but as a vital element in ensuring the reliability and longevity of the metallurgical outcomes.

Metal Refining

Beyond its use as an inert and shielding gas, Argon plays a critical role in the refining of metals. Argon is an excellent medium for efficiently degassing molten metals due to its extraordinary density and low ionization energy. This vital process helps eliminate undesired contaminants, refines the metal’s composition, and helps produce superior-grade, pure metals for a variety of industrial uses.


NexAir is a company whose commitment is to supply varying industries with the equipment they need to carry out their metal processing activities. A visit to our website will provide you with all the information you need on how we can be of tremendous help to you. Visit us today.

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