If the deep-sea oil and gas sectors continue to flourish, so will the need for a strong maritime infrastructure. As a result, specially qualified underwater welders would be needed to complete the construction of underwater structures. A career in underwater welding could be just the right combination of travel, adventure, and excitement for some. But, what is underwater welding, and what does an underwater welder do?
What kind of job is underwater welding?
Often known as wet welding, underwater welding consists of a specially skilled welder being immersed at elevated barometric pressures to perform a weld directly in the sea. Hyperbaric welding basically means welding at high pressures. Dry welding is a form of hyperbaric welding that involves submerging a welder underwater within a hyperbaric chamber. A high-pressure gas is pumped into the chamber, forcing the water out. In this situation, the welder may perform required welding construction or repairs in a dry setting, even at large depths. To become a hyperbaric welder, you’ll need advanced welding experience and a commercial diver’s license.
What is the role of an underwater welder?
Underwater welders must first be experienced divers, then welders. An underwater welder is responsible for a wide range of underwater construction and surveying tasks and can use wet or dry welding techniques for a variety of purposes.
Here are a couple of examples of underwater welding work:
- Marine pipelines
- Floating oil rigs
- Docking stations
- Mining applications
- Ships and barges
- Dam maintenance
- Underwater environments
- Nuclear power plants
Commercial diving contractors, shipping agencies, maritime building companies, oil and gas companies, and military branches employ most underwater welders.
How much does an underwater welder make?
A career in underwater welding can be very profitable. In spite of that, there are many things that will decide how much money you earn in the end.
- Personal Ability – Once a smooth, powerful, and professional hyperbaric welder has proved their value, their salary will skyrocket.
- Geographic Positioning – The underwater welder’s location would have a significant impact on their pay. Several considerations must be considered, including the cost of living in – state and the union salaries in that country.
- Size of the Business – A small industrial diving company will have less than five employees, a medium company may have fewer than 12 employees, and a large company may have more than 20 employees. The bigger the company’s size, the higher the pay.
According to a special study published by the American Welding Society (AWS), a hyperbaric welder’s average pay ranges between $100,000 and $200,000 per year. The majority of welder-divers are paid per project, and other considerations such as depth, diving technique, and diving climate will influence compensation.
In Texas and Louisiana, the Gulf Coast shale boom has generated a need for skilled jobs, especially welders. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), these two states, along with Florida and California, have the highest rate of commercial diving jobs.
To become an underwater welder, you’ll need specific skills and preparation.
An underwater welder must have a positive outlook, a desire to adventure, and a sense of exploration and curiosity about their chosen profession. In addition, the applicant must be in good physical health and possess the following qualities:
- A physical examination must be passed.
- Commercial diving certification is required (a commercial dive certification is different from just a dive certification). This necessitates a diver’s ability to communicate with other divers, dive physiology, rescue operations, underwater examinations, hyperbaric chamber service, and the use of a range of industrial-grade instruments.
- AWS-certified welding education is also required of the diver. This necessitates a diver’s ability to perform welding set-up procedures and planning.
How to get started in underwater welding industry?
A substantial amount of preparation is needed to work as an underwater welder. To begin, you’ll need formal training from a school that specializes in underwater welding. You’ll still need to get a commercial diver’s certificate. It’s important to keep the credentials up to date. Jobs, like every other occupation, are based on economic production and consumption. If the underwater welding industry expands, the industry’s requirements for underwater welds and certification are set to rise, making obtaining up-to-date credentials essential for success.
Thank you for reading! To read more on how to earn as a scuba diver, follow this link.