Videos & Resources / Glossary
Air Controls Adjusts the force being applied to the parts during the weld cycle.
Amorphous A polymer with random molecular structure of chains that vary in length. Vibratory energy can easily be transmitted through amorphous polymers.
Amplitude Refers to vertical, vibratory, peak-to-peak movement produced by the convertor, modified by the booster and fine-tuned by the horn.
Booster A device used to modify the convertor-generated amplitude by either increasing or decreasing it before it gets to the horn.
Boss A raised portion of the workpiece, usually a circular, hollow feature for pin location and insertion.
Clearance Allowing room for the plastic to flow in the joint design.
Convertor Converts high-frequency electrical energy into high-frequency mechanical vibratory energy.
Copolymer A combination of two different resins joining to make one polymer.
Crystalline Polymers with a an orderly arrangement of molecules that repeat in precise patterns. The spring-like molecules tend to absorb energy making it more difficult to transmit vibratory energy through it.
Cycle Counter Counts the number of parts assembled.
Degating To remove the mold gate or runner on a part that is created during the mold process.
Down Platen Button Used in conjunction with the setup key, this button will lower the platen to the part.
Dwell Timer Adjusts the amount of time that pressure is held on the parts during the weld cycle.
Emergency Stop Button Completely disables all functions of the machine.
Energy Director Typically a triangular-shaped ridge molded into one of the mating plastic parts. This ridge limits initial ultrasonic contact to a very small area. The ridge melts during ultrasonic assembly, causing plastic to flow through the joint and bonding the parts together.
Far Field Refers to parts having an interface more then 1/4″ from the contact surface of the ultrasonic horn.
Fixture An automatic or manual holding device used to secure the parts being assembled. Refers to molten plastic that seeps out of the joints.
Flow Control Adjustments These control valves are used to fine tune adjustments on movements that utilize air flow.
Guard A clear plexy covering of the thermal tooling, which protects the operator from getting injured.
Heat On/Off Switch Turns the heat probes on.
Hermetic Seal An ultrasonically welded seal that is air and water tight under pressure.
Homopolymer Refers to a polymer made up of just one resin.
Horn A precisely shaped and tuned piece of material, usually aluminum or titanium, attached to the booster which transfers the ultrasonic energy to the part being welded.
Hz Refers to the number of cycles per second. 20 kHz means 20,000 cycles per second
Inserting Embedding metal components such as inserts into preformed holes in a thermoplastic part.
Interface The area where two mating parts contact each other.
Jack-Out Refers to the amount of force it would take to disassemble inserts that have been ultrasonically inserted.
Joints The point at which two thermoplastic parts connect. The four most commonly used joints in ultrasonic assembly are Butt, Step, Shear, and Tongue & Groove.
Linear Encoder An ultrasonic welder accessory which detects the precise height location of the welder head. The welder can be programmed to weld to certain depths during staking or inserting with the use of this device.
Microprocessor A computerized controller of an ultrasonic welder that provides precise control over weld parameters such as energy, time and pressure.
Mode of Operation Switch The switch is used by the set-up operator. In set-up mode the machine settings can be adjusted. In Run mode the machine settings are locked.
Near Field Refers to parts having an interface less then a 1/4″ from the contact surface of the ultrasonic horn.
Piezoelectric Crystals Material which changes dimension when electrical energy is applied to it. The change in dimension coincides with the frequency of the alternating current which causes a vibration or conversion to mechanical energy.
Platen Pressure Gauge Measures the force being applied to the parts.
Post Cool Adjustment Knob Main power. This button overrides all other on/off switches.
Photo-Electric Palm Buttons Push these 2 buttons to start the weld cycle. Both buttons must be touched at the same time in order for the welding head to come down. This is a safety mechanism to prevent injury.
Power Supply Converts standard 50/60 Hz alternating current to high-frequency electrical energy above 15,000 Hz. Power supplies are available in different power wattages, usually between 200 – 4,000 watts.
Resin Chemical compounds which make up plastic polymers. These polymers are divided into the following two categories: Amorphous and Crystalline.
Spot Welding Assembling thermoplastics without preformed holes or energy directors. This method is useful for large parts and sheets of extruded or cast thermoplastics.
Staking The process of melting and reforming a thermoplastic post to lock a dissimilar material in place mechanically.
Swaging Capturing another component of an assembly by ultrasonically melting and reforming a ridge of plastic over the other material.
Temperature Controllers These controllers set the temperature for each of the individual heating zones.
Terpolymer A combination of three different resins which make up one polymer.
Thermal Tooling This consists of the heating probes and tips that are designed to heat stake, insert, swage, degate, emboss, date code, or decorate the parts.
Thermoplastic Plastic which can be remelted and reformed with the introduction of heat and pressure.
Ultrasonic Welding Ultrasonic vibration in excess of 15,000 Hz creates heat and melting of plastic at the interface of two thermoplastic parts. When the vibration stops, the molten plastic resolidifies bonding the parts together.