HotWire Plasma Cutting - Cutting of interrupted Structures

The basic principle for cutting interrupted structures is indirect plasma cutting with the arc burning between the electrode and the nozzle of the plasma torch in contrast to direct plasma cutting. When applying the Hot-Wire technology, neither the work-piece nor the nozzle is used as anode but a wire (e.g. welding wire) which is continuously fed during the cutting process. Non-conductive materials like fibre-glass reinforced plastics, concrete, armoured concrete, ceramics, but also glass, wired glass and textiles can be cut with this technology. Further, it is possible to cut gratings consisting of different materials, i.e. mild steel, CrNi steel and aluminium using the cutting gases and matching consumables known for plasma cutting. The maxium workpiece thickness is mainly determined by the capacity of the plasma power source and, thus, the available energy.

Advantages of the HotWire process

Unlike oxy-fuel cutting, different contours can be cut without preheating and, therefore, without additional rotating head and regardless of direction. Also CrNi-steel and aluminium gratings which cannot be cut with oxy-fuel can be cut with this technology safely and reliably. At present, the cutting current ranges between 200 A and 300 A. Depending on cutting current, material, size of the root face and required geometry, cutting speeds of up to 1.1 m/min are possible with good results. Due to the uninterrupted arc, the load on the consumables is low and process safety is high. The first industrial applications confirm these findings. Good cutting with little rectangularity tolerance allows manifold possible applications when cutting all kinds of contours. The HotWire method is used, inter alia, for the dismantling of nuclear power plants.

Suited power sources:
HiFocus 360i neo and HiFocus 440i neo

Further information: