Laser welding is increasingly becoming an important manufacturing technology for a number of production processes. Laser welding is a process that joins thermoplastics and metals together, utilising a laser beam to give form to a weld. Being the highly concentrated source of heat that it is, laser welding for thinner materials can be effectively carried out at high speeds (meters per minute). For thicker materials on the other end, deep and narrow welds can be produced between the parts that are square edged.
Mode of laser welding
Laser welding operates in two fundamentally distinct modes; keyhole and conduction-limited welding. The mode using which a laser beam will interact with the material that is being welded is dependent on the power density of the beam striking the material being laser welded. Laser welding is more commonly accomplished utilising a high-power density, using a keyhole mechanism. When the laser beam is focused on a smaller spot, enough power density is produced and the material in the path of the laser beam will vaporise in addition to melting. This happens prior to removal of significant quantities of heat through conduction. Furthermore, the coupling of a laser beam in the workpiece is drastically improved post the formation of a keyhole. Deep penetration type of welding can then be easily achieved, ultimately resulting in welds that have a high depth to width ratio.
A typical laser welding system
Given the action of surface tension, molten material present at the leading edge finally cools down and solidifies to form the weld. The scope and potential for laser welding is immense. Scientists are making consistent efforts to further research and test this novel welding technology for achieving greater compatibility to suffice the advancements in the forthcoming years. A typical laser welding system comprises a motorized guide and laser optics. In a majority of cases, semi-finished products to be welded must be clamped firmly for enabling precise joining. A distinction has therefore been developed between a stationary laser welding system and a mobile laser welding system.
Safe laser welding technology- The future of laser welding
Safer technology is often neglected but is crucial for the process of laser welding. In addition to advanced welding technology, such as virtual reality and laser welding. The field of laser welding has its eyes on the potential future of safe welding technology. This laser welding technology, if implemented correctly, utilising lean practices in the laser welding operations can facilitate expansion in terms of capacity and improvised production/manufacturing processes.
Dynotech Instruments represent leading laser welding and laser micromachining manufacturers from across the world and is bringing new, safe, technology to India. Our variety of divisions cover a wide range of applications including photonics, nanotechnology and solar lasers