Plasma for Beginners

Plasma Arc Welding (PAW) and Plasma Arc Cutting (PAC) are two processes that are pretty amazing.  Plasma refers to the physical state of gas after it has been exposed to extremely high temperatures.  This ionized stream of gas generates a column of heat that is used for welding or cutting metals.

You won’t find a lot PAW applications in a backyard weldshop, but Plasma Cutters are pretty common….

If you already know all about plasma cutting, then this article is not for you.  This article is for newbies, for people like, well, I’ll just say it — for people like me.  But now that I’ve read the article, I think I might be ready to move on up in the world… you know, to articles like these –>

Plasma cutting and how it works

By Kent Swart, Contributing Writer
August 11, 2009

What is plasma cutting, and when is it your best metal cutting option? What information do you need to choose the right plasma system? This article answers these questions and more about plasma cutting.

The basic technology for plasma cutting has been around for decades. Researchers and engineers remain focused on increasing cut speed, improving cut quality, and extending consumable life, while making systems smaller and more powerful.

What Is Plasma Cutting?

Once a gas is heated to an extremely high temperature and ionized, it becomes electrically conductive and is considered to be plasma. Plasma arc cutting and gouging processes use plasma to transfer an electrical arc to the workpiece. The metal to be cut or removed is melted by the arc’s heat and then blown away.


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