AUSTRALIAN and NZ steel fabricators bidding for work on major resource and infrastructure projects will have one less hurdle to leap from next year.
Fabricators who are required to use North American welding codes will for the first time be able to qualify welding procedures using readily available Xlerplate steel.
From 2008 key grades of Xlerplate structural steels will be listed as part of the American Welding Society’s AWS B2.1 standard, which is one of two key reference documents in the US for weld procedure and performance qualifications.
“This is a major breakthrough for local fabricators,” said Bruce Cannon, Senior Metallurgist with BlueScope Steel.
“It follows years of collective engineering efforts and is the latest evidence of a growing trend to internationalise standards.
“The approval process to use local steel has been very convoluted and fabricators wanting to take on export work for South East Asia were also effectively locked out of a market dominated by ASME and AWS D1.1 welding standards for pressure vessels and structural steels,” Cannon said.