Ultrasonic technology is a relatively recent addition to the welding process, but it represents a huge step forward. Reliant on high-frequency acoustic vibrations, this approach has allowed for exciting strides in everything from healthcare to aerospace.

A Brief History of Ultrasonic Welding

Before you can truly understand ultrasonic welding's influence, you need to grasp how far we've come in such a short time. To help, we've highlighted the most important historical events in the ultrasonic welding niche below:

Obtaining a Patent

The theoretical underpinnings of ultrasonic welding appeared during the late 19th century, but it was not until the 1960s that Robert Soloff and Seymour Linsley secured a patent. Top engineers of the time were amazed that it was possible to bond thermoplastics without relying on the extreme heat associated required for previous strategies.

Getting a patent was a big deal for Soloff, who, as a lab manager, stumbled upon the opportunity while welding plastic films into bags with help from ultrasonic probes. He discovered that, when harnessing the power of ultrasonic energy, there was no need to manually move the probe. 

Ultrasonic Welding Enters New Industries

The early ultrasonic press was primarily used for manufacturing toys. Soon after, however, additional applications were discovered.

For example: the automotive industry. While a 1969 effort produced a car entirely from plastic, this material never truly caught on in the automotive industry. Ultrasonic welding did, however, with this approach completely taking over by the 1980s. Its current popularity in both the automotive and aerospace industries derives, in part, from the increased reliance on composites in both sectors.

While our team at Rochester Industrial Services finds the history of ultrasonic welding fascinating, we're most interested in moving this technology forward. To learn more about our cutting-edge approach, contact us today.