US-Made Ultrasonic Metal Welding Machines Offer Manufacturers Increased Productivity and Efficiency
WEST CHESTER, Pennsylvania – Sonobond Ultrasonics has been buttressing what some analysts expect will be a resurgence in U.S. manufacturing.
"Our faith in the U.S.A. as a manufacturing base has never wavered," says Sonobond President Janet Devine. She adds that despite the domestic manufacturing sector's recent years of lackluster performance, "Sonobond has continued to make ultrasonic metal welding machines in the U.S.—and has done so since our inception. This is especially important to potential buyers concerned about the economic impacts of off-shore production."
Trends Point to Growth Between 4 and 5 Percent*
Belief in the underlying strength of domestic manufacturing is beginning to re-emerge as 2015 enters its fourth quarter. Several trends are becoming apparent. Among them: higher transportation and overseas labor costs are encouraging manufacturers to move production back to the U.S., shortening the supply chain; the reduction in energy costs due to the abundance and affordability of natural gas is also encouraging re-shoring, while presenting new opportunities for products and services; and increased profits are leading companies to boost their investment in capital equipment, especially for devices that operate more efficiently, reducing downtime and maintenance costs.
"Our American-based approach to providing and developing equipment has always been consistent with manufacturers' interest in boosting productivity and efficiency and making wise capital invesments," explains Devine. In fact, Sonobond has been a worldwide leader in the development of ultrasonic metal welding equipment since it received the first patent ever awarded for ultrasonic metal welding in 1960, when the company was known as Aeroprojects. It has continued to design innovative equipment with unique capabilities to serve a wide spectrum of industries.
Benefits of Ultrasonic Welding
Sonobond's ultrasonic equipment creates solid-state metallurgical bonds by introducing high-frequency vibration while the weldment is under moderately high clamping force. Moreover, the company's exclusive, patented Wedge-Reed System gives Sonobond equipment significant advantages over its competitors. This System combines low vibratory amplitude with high vibratory force and utilizes a shear mode vibration parallel to the welding surface. Since the line of force is positioned directly over the welding surface, bending stress and stalling are eliminated, maximizing welding effectiveness. This welding method allows welds of thin-to-thin or thin-to-thick materials, including non-ferrous similar and dissimilar metals. It also uniquely permits welds of most oxidized or tinned metals with no special cleaning process. The result is strong, reliable welds with excellent thermal and electrical conductivity.
Ultrasonic Metal Welders for Varied Applications
"Our technology is adaptable and our equipment is engineered to satisfy the needs of manufacturers in a variety of fields, including those requiring customized tooling," says Devine. Sonobond units are routinely used to weld stranded wire-to-wire and wire-to-terminal for electrical wire harness and bus bar applications. They can weld multiple layers of thin aluminum, copper and nickel foil to itself or to battery terminals and components of fuses/circuit breakers, ignition modules, and photovoltaic panels. One version of our equipment can also seal HVAC tubing, replacing crimp and solder methods.
"We continue to be sensitive to manufacturers' downtime and maintenance concerns by equipping all our welding units with quick-change, tool steel, taper-lock tips that can perform up to 100,000 welds before replacement, and do not require equipment recalibration after replacement," Devine adds.
The SonoWeld® 1600 Digital Metal Spot Welder
The ideal equipment for energy-efficient ultrasonic assembly of multiple layers and/or delicate foils to tabs or terminals for lithium-ion and NiMH batteries is Sonobond's SonoWeld® 1600 Digital Metal Spot Welder. The unit also accommodates electrical bus bar fabrication; spot welds aluminum up to 0.080 inches (2mm) or copper up to 0.064 inches (1.6mm) thick, and welds stranded wire to brass or copper terminals, including multi-connection terminals. The microprocessor-controlled system, available with power outputs of 1,500, 2,500 or 3,500 watts, allows storage and recall of more than 250 weld protocols, and features automatic frequency control and overload protection. A digital display permits selection of welding modes by time, energy, or final weld thickness.
Dual Head Ultrasonic Metal Spot Welder
Sonobond's Dual Head Spot Welder has a similar microprocessor controller and uses the 3,500 watt power supply. With welding heads on either side of the welding area, it can weld non-ferrous sheet metal – including aluminum up to 3 mm thick – for automotive applications. For advanced battery and super capacitor applications, it welds as many as 100 layers of copper, aluminum, or nickel foil as thin as seven microns to tabs and terminals, as well as attaching wires to terminals. It also welds lightly tinned or oxidized wires, creating solid-state metallurgical bonds with high conductivity.
Sonobond SpliceRite™ Ultrasonic Wire Splicer and Dual Head Unit
Like Sonobond's spot welders, the SpliceRite™ Ultrasonic Wire Splicer creates a true metallurgical and highly conductive bond, even when splicing oxidized or tin-coated wire bundles. By employing vibratory waves instead of electrically-created direct heat, it eliminates the insulation burnback, cooling water waste and high-energy consumption of resistance welding. Its microprocessor controller can program welds by energy or time, as well as by weld height when equipped with an optional sensor, and it can also recall up to 250 weld protocols.
The Dual Head SpliceRite™ – suitable for heavy-duty vehicular and industrial machinery cables – can weld wire bundles with cross-sectional areas up to 100 sq. mm, and tinned wires up to 60 sq. mm in just a single pulse. Welds produced by all SpliceRite™ units meet IPC/WHMA-A-620B specifications for high conductivity and tensile strength.
Ultrasonic Single Point Ground Welder - SPG2600
For the single point ground terminals used in automotive electronic components and circuitry to eliminate electrical noise, Sonobond offers its Ultrasonic Single Point Ground Welder - SPG2600. In one pulse, the unit welds up to 18 wires – or wire bundles of up to 20 sq. mm – to a single terminal before automatically crimping the terminal arms around the wires for stress relief. Since it employs Sonobond's patented Wedge-Reed system, this welder can also accommodate lightly tinned or oxidized wires.
WeldMaster™ C-Frame I and II Ultrasonic Metal Spot Welders
Sonobond also produces ultrasonic welders to handle large non-ferrous or dissimilar metal parts like those used in the automotive industry. Its WeldMaster™ C-Frame I Ultrasonic Metal Spot Welder has a 14-inch throat depth and a single head. The C-Frame II has an 18-inch throat depth and can be configured for operation by a robot. Available with a single or double head, it can reduce weld time and energy use when joining large sheet metal components.
The Sonobond Tube Terminator™
For crimping and ultrasonic sealing of copper and aluminum tubing, Sonobond's Tube Terminator™ provides a hand-guided, one-step process. It produces a quick, airtight seal without brazing and is especially applicable for tubes charged with coolant, fluids and gases, such as those used for instrument, refrigeration and air-conditioning applications.
Free Ultrasonic Welding Viability Test
Sonobond offers a free, no-obligation ultrasonic welding viability test to potential customers – using materials they supply – to ensure that its equipment meets manufacturers' expectations and specific applications. Also, Sonobond stands by its technical expertise and quality service, assisting customers with initial questions, custom tooling design and fabrication, and from start-up through on-going customer support.
Visit Sonobond at the Assembly Show
To view Sonobond equipment and speak to our representatives, see us at The Assembly Show, October 27-29, Rosemont, IL. We'll be at Booth #1215.
For more than a half-century, Sonobond Ultrasonics has led the industry in ultrasonic bonding and welding technology, establishing and maintaining a well-earned reputation for innovative and quality-engineered products. Today, the company manufactures a complete line of ultrasonic welding and bonding equipment and tube-drawing components used by leading firms in the electrical, automotive, appliance, HVAC, solar, aerospace, filtration, medical, body armor and apparel industries.
To learn more about Sonobond technology and equipment, or to submit samples for a free Ultrasonic Metal Welding Viability Test, visit www.SonobondUltrasonics.com. For immediate assistance, please call 800-323-1269, 610-696-4710 or email Vice President Melissa Alleman at MAlleman@SonobondUltrasonics.com.