A common arc welding process that uses heat generated by an arc formed when an electric current passes between a welding wire and the work piece. The tip of the welding wire, the arc and the weld joint are covered by a layer of granular flux. The heat generated by the arc melts the wire, the base metal and the flux. The flux shields the molten pool from atmospheric contamination, cleans impurities from the weld metal and shapes the weld bead. Depending on the design of the flux, it can also add alloying elements to the weld metal to alter the chemical and mechanical properties of the weld.
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