The Global Energy Prize laureate 2010
Boris Paton’s developments in welding technologies opened the door to global energy projects of the latter half of the 20-th century
Academic environment knows people who are a whole science in themselves. In their entire long and fruitful life, they manage to participate in a number of inspiring large-scale global projects and become part of them. Paton’s name strongly associates with welding, connection of two parts. The process seems close to magic: at welding point, connections at the level of atoms occurs, so in this area of the part they change their initial nature and become aggregated. Once this process was seen as connection of metallic parts, but today, the very description of welding does not contain the word “metal”, we are not talking of metallic products, that is not only metallic. Yet a hundred years ago when a Kiev engineer and bridge constructor Evgeny Oskarovich Paton starting experimenting with welded constructions of bridges, only steel was the subject of consideration. Decades later, his son Boris Paton would speak of the prospects of the space welding which will make it possible to generate new materials for space ships and construction of on-orbit stations in the open space. Sound combinations of metals with ceramics, metals with hermetic films – that is what scientists will work on in future. “These are not some far-off projects”, the scientist noted. “At present, in laboratory conditions there is a theoretical possibility to weld metals together in different combinations, as well as weld metals with non-metals”.