From cars and automobiles to ships and pipelines, welding has played a key part in many aspects of contemporary life. Today we explore some engineering landmarks as part of our celebration for #NationalWeldingMonth.
The Grand Canyon Skywalk
This horseshoe-shaped steel and glass sculpture extends 70 feet over the canyon’s edge at a vertigo inducing 4,000 feet above the Colorado River. The box girders, made of carbon steel, were sub-arc welded. This technique means that the skywalk can support over 70 million pounds and withstand 8.0 earthquakes.
Located in The Bronx, New York this coliseum is made up of 39 zinc-coated steel sections. These sections are welded together and help support the stadium lights and upper decks, giving everyone a clear view of the field. This homage to baseball was built with 14,000 tons of steel and 18,000 pounds of welding rod.
The Gateway Arch
Found in St. Louis, this structure was constructed using a variety of welding techniques. The triangle-shaped sections consist of an outer stainless steel wall and an inner carbon steel wall. Butt welding is used on both, and MIG welding was used to connect the polished stainless steel. Welders connected the inner and outer walls using spot welding, to ensure that the steel would not warp due to the heat.
This engineering achievement runs below the Detroit River and connects Detroit, Michigan to Windsor, Ontario. It is the only sub aqueous international automobile crossing in the world. While only one mile in length, this structure contains over 12 miles of welding work. It still remains one of the busiest border crossings between Canada and the United States.
The Iron Pillar of Delhi
This 23 foot tall iron pillar was erected in Delhi, India between the 4th and 5th century. It is most famous for its rust-resistant composition despite being made entirely of metal. This testament to metalworkers was manufactured through forge welding wrought iron.
Millennial Park Cloud Gate
You can find this drop of mercury in Chicago, Illinois. This structure consists of steel plates curved over a steel rib skeleton. Once welded, the exterior was polished to it’s iconic mirror finish. Cool beans, right?