Advances in homopolar welding of API linepipe for deepwater applications
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The University of Texas at Austin Center for Electromechanics is conducting a research program to study homopolar welding of line pipe for J-Lay applications. In 1995, the third year of the five year research program, process improvements increased Charpy V-Notch impact toughness properties to near parent metal values, while maintaining acceptable strength. After demonstrating repeatable performance, research focused on real world effects including evaluating the effect of poor fit up resulting from misalignment and rough and wavy interfaces. During the final year of the research program, the pipe welding program has scaled up to 12-inch nominal line pipe, a sevenfold increase in cross-sectional area. The paper will cover basics of homopolar welding, mechanical properties, weld upset profile, HPW metallurgy, and the studies of real world effects. Results from homopolar welding of 12-inch pipe will also be presented.