The filler material in powder form is applied using a plasma jet. The powder is heated and melts completely when it hits the partly melted base material. In the RWE Maintenance & Engineering Center a mixture of tungsten carbide and nickel is the standard powder for hardfacing. The extremely hard tungsten carbides prevent wear.
The benefits are obvious: the PTA method allows for low dilution, a small heat-affected zone, a high deposition rate and a genuine metallurgical fusion of substrate and coating. In this way nearly all materials and material composites of varying hardness can be applied. This process is fully automated in the RWE Maintenance & Engineering Center. However, two stations for manual PTA welding for more delicate tasks are also available.