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What is Metal inert gas welding (MIG), and its applications?

Metal inert gas welding (MIG)

Today I will be discussing on what is metal inert gas welding (MIG). Previously, some article was published on arc welding. checkout below;

What is metal inert gas welding (MIG)?

Metal inert gas welding (MIG)

Metal inert gas welding is an arc welding process, which is shielded by an external gas welding (argon, helium, co2, argon + oxygen or other gas mixture.) It uses consumable electrode wire, which have a chemical composition similar to the parent material. This process is semi-automatic due to the automatic feeding of the filling wire electrode. The operator only controls on the torch positioning and the welding speed.

This welding is also known as gas metal arc welding (GMAW), which uses a continuously fed solid wire electrode. It melts the base materials together, which solidifies and produces bond using the welding gun. The welding gun also feed an inert shielding gas alongside wire electrode. This help to protect the process from airborne contaminants.

MIG welding was first originated in USA in 1949 for welding aluminum. It became popular around 1952 in UK for welding aluminum using argon as the shielding gas, and carbon steels using co2.co2 and argon-co2 mixtures. It is also known as metal active gas process (MAG).

MIG welding equipment include:

MIG welding equipment

  • Consumable electrode
  • Inert gas supply
  • Welding bead
  • AC or DC power supply. And
  • Electrode feeding mechanism

Addition of shielding gas from the arc to the weld pool have few importance, which include:

  • Stabilization of the arc roots on the material surface
  • Forms the arc plasma
  • Ensures smooth transfer of molten metal droplets from the wire to the weld pool


The followings are applications of MIG welding:

The gases are normally used on steel; co2 argon + 2 to 5% oxygen and argon +5 to 2% co2 and nonferrous metals like aluminum, copper or nickel alloys, argon, argon/helium.

Advantages of metal inert gas welding

  • It is easy and simple
  • Filler material is not needed
  • The gas is protected automatically
  • Continuous electrode is easy to feed
  • It does not produce slag


Despites the great benefits of MIG welding, the following are disadvantages of this welding process.

  • The welder is exposed to hazardous gases
  • Weld becomes porous if the welding gun is not properly handled
  • Improper welding may lead to the floating of solid impurities over the liquid welding
  • It is expensive and the equipment is not portable
  • It cannot be done outdoor because of effect of wind, dispersing the shielding gas

Also check:

And that is it for this article, What is Metal inert gas welding (MIG). Its applications is also examined in this article. So, ask questions, comment and share. Thanks for reading!


One comment

  1. Hey

    Thank you for this amazing article! It has opened up my mind about the welder.

    Very Informative and helpful post. Like this is the perfect list of the tools that one must-have. You can find different tools in a different post but this post contains the perfect list and all the essential tools at the same place. Very well sorted list. Thanks for it.

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