The safety of the welded components depends on their design, the manufacturing processes and procedures, the skilled labour for welding and the inspection and tests required by codes and standards for which it is essential to have inspectors with certified skills and welders or certified welding operators based on previously qualified welding procedures.

Through the technical cooperation agreement in force between the IRAM (Argentine Institute for Standardization and Certification) and IAS, the Welding Area participates in the development and application of the welding standards in force in our country and fulfills the functions of the Technical Secretariat of the Executive Boards of the Enabling and Permanent Certification Entity as defined by IRAM/IAS U 500 138 and 169 respectively.

The Welding Area fulfills the functions of the Enabling Entity, being responsible for the planning of qualification and monitoring audits for the certification of the entities to qualify welding procedures and welders or welding operators, in addition to being responsible for keeping records of all qualifications and certifications issued by the entities authorized according to the standard IRAM/IAS U 500-138.

The OCIS (Welding Inspector Qualification Body) operates within the scope of the IAS-Welding Area. The OCIS is the only qualification body recognized by IRAM in Argentina, according the IRAM/IAS U 500-169, complying with the requirements of the international standard IRAM-ISO/IEC 17024, (Conformity assessment - General requirements for bodies operating certification of persons). The OCIS is part of the Qualification and Certification Scheme accredited by the OAA (Argentine Accreditation Body) , being audited annually by the IRAM with the testimony of the OAA.

All the activities developed by the IAS - Welding Area, contribute to the safety and quality of the constructions and manufacturing of components that involve welding, allowing the industry to have skilled labor and professionals with certified competencies.

IRAM/IAS U 500-169 Standard - Welding - Qualification and certification of inspectors. Active Standard (Latest Version) Last Updated December 2016, Fifth edition.

This standard is applicable to the entire field of construction and repair of metal structures or components in which any welding process is involved. The objective is to establish the system for the qualification and certification of welding inspectors; define the qualification and certification levels, their competences, the requirements and the procedure for their qualification and certification. Two calls are made annually for the qualification of welding inspectors; in June and November. The requirements to access the qualification are indicated in points 6.3.4 and 6.3.5 of the Procedure IAS-OCIS P02-Qualification of Welding Inspectors.

IRAM/IAS U 500-138 Standard - Enabling entity and bodies of qualification and certification of welders, operators and welding procedures. Active Standard (Latest Version) Last Updated June 2016, Fourth edition.

This standard is applicable throughout the field of construction and repair of metal components in which welding processes are applied. It defines a system of qualification and certification of welding procedures, welders and welding operators, applicable to the entities of qualification and certification and establishes the constitution, responsibilities and requirements that must be met by the enabling entity and the bodies of qualification of welders and welding operators and welding procedure qualification. It is applicable in conjunction with other standards or design codes in which requirements are defined for the qualification of welding procedures, welders and welding operators.

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