Exothermic welds offer long-life connections and are simple to make.
Exothermic welding connects cables, ground rods, terminals and structures; the resulting molecular bond produces a permanent connection that won't loosen or corrode over the lifetime of the installation. You should use exothermically welded connections when: you require long life/permanent connections; you expect high current faults; or corrosive conditions exist.
The equipment required to make exothermic connections is lightweight, portable and does not require outside power. The resulting bond is a permanent joining of metallic parts that form an electrically conductive path. This will ensure electrical continuity and the capacity to conduct any potential current safely.
These permanent connections will carry as much, or more, current as the conductor. These connections eliminate bimetallic corrosion at the point of the weld. All strands of the conductor will equally share the current load.
Exothermically welded connections are easy to make by following a few basic instructions and taking the following precautions.
• Do not mix parts and materials from different manufacturers. Since they did not undergo testing together, this may create an unsafe situation.
• Do not attempt to make a connection to a wet conductor. The hot metal will turn the moisture to steam, which may cause spewing of hot metal.
• Check mold openings before initiating the reaction. Any opening may allow molten metal to leak.
When finished, clean the loose slag from the mold before making the next connection. The mold does not have to cool before proceeding to the next connection.