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Laser Processing

The Laser Processing division which emerged from the formerly Laser Center Leoben is your competent expert and partner in laser materials processing. Due to our long-time expertise we offer you competent advice, process development, small batch production, transfer into serial readiness as well as process optimisation and quality management during serial production in the fields of laser welding, laser cladding and laser alloying. Laser beam analysis, which is essential in many cases of laser processing, completes our portfolio.

Laserschweissen
laser welding

Competence

Our main competences in laser materials processing lie in the fields of laser welding, laser cladding and laser alloying. Being widespread technologies nowadays, laser welding and laser cladding are essential standard in certain industrial sectors and gain more and more importance in others. Here we offer results-oriented process development until serial readiness including quality management, with respect to either a future in-house small batch production or transfer into serial production at the customer site. Laser alloying, which cannot be substituted by any alternative technology, has been developed into serial readiness and is since then realized in a world-wide unrivaled industrial process on behalf of two major customers.

 

 

Laser welding

Laser welding

Although laser welding (with or without addition) is already standard in many industrial sectors, the development of new laser welding processes is still essential. The always recurring challenges are:

  • Laser welding of exactly defined welding seams in width and depth

  • Laser welding of unusual material combinations or novel alloys

  • Laser welding of components having difficult geometries up to finest joints with lowest thermal load

 

For laser welding we are equipped with high-power lasers in the multi-kilowatt range as well as with special laser optics (scanner optics, bifocal optics) for optimum results. Our equipment also includes an articulated welding robot that can be used for the realisation of laser welding on large components with complex 3D welding paths.

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Laser cladding

Complex protection layers, component repair and additive manufacturing

 

Wear or corrosion protection layers onto tools or machinery parts are applied via laser cladding. Our main competence is the process development for complex layer systems optimized for the particular application. Compared to other cladding techniques laser cladding stands for lowest thermal loads thus minimizing the occuring warping. Due to the precision and stability of the laser beam complex claddings are feasible. By combining automatically adjustable focusing optics with a simulation software for welding path generation and a robot system solutions can be developed even for complex surface topologies.

One of our flagship projects was the development of a complex protection layer system with exactly defined layer thickness cladded onto drilling heads used for oilfield exploration. The challenges were the dimensions of the tools on one hand and on the other the requirement of a range of tolerance of a few tenth of a millimeter in total layer thickness in order to save the costly postprocessing. After being developed into serial production readiness at MATERIALS this cladding process is operated in multi-shifts on several laser systems until today at the customers site (Schoeller Bleckmann Oilfield Technology).

Goblet

Another application of laser cladding gaining more and more in importance is the repair of components: High-value components (e.g. casting moulds, turbine blades,…) can be repaired cost-efficiently by cladding an equivalent alloy onto the worn out spots.

Generative manufacturing is a further application of laser cladding: Via cladding one layer onto another complex structures can be generated. The necessary intermediate and postprocessing for this technique can be done in one step using our combined laser and high-speed milling station.

For all of these applications we offer you the complete chain from system configuration advice over process development and optimization up to the transfer into serial production readiness including quality management. In the case of small quantities we will also take over your batch production.

extruder screw

Laser alloying

Laser alloying

Laser alloying is a special technique that has been transferred into serial readiness by our group. It is based on the addition of small amounts of alloying elements into the weld pool, thus generating a new alloy with drastically improved wear resistance on the selected areas after re-solidification. Main application is the local hardening of machinery components made of a cost-saving base material. Laser alloying is since then realised at our site within a world-wide unrivalled and patent-registered industrial process.

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Laser beam analysis

Laser beam analysis

One of the basics of quality management in serial production is the stability of the laser beam parameters. It is the long-term slow drift of these parameters leading to a loss in manufacturing quality and process speed. Laser beam analysis includes at least the measurement of laser power and beam diameter. These two parameters have the main influence on the process results. Therefore a frequent laser beam analysis is inevitable in most cases. Customers to which quality assurance is essential, know about the importance of laser beam analysis and gladly rely on our experience.

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