How Everything Works
How Everything Works How Everything Works

Question 1074

How does an electric welder work? — JE
An electric welder sends an electric current through an ionized gas, forming a pattern of current flow through the gas that is known as an arc. The ionized gases in this arc consist of electrons that are negatively charged and atoms or molecules that have lost electrons to become positively charged. The electrons flow toward the positively charged metal at one end of the arc while the positively charged ion flow toward the negatively charged metal at the other end of the arc. As these charged particles move, they collide frequently with one another and with gas atoms or molecules along their paths, and they convert some of their electric energies into thermal energy. These collisions also produce additional ions. The enormous amounts of thermal energy produced by collisions as the charged particles flow through the arc melts the metals at the ends of the arc so that these metals can be fused together.

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