Commonly known as laser beam welding, the process is an industrial welding operation that joins the components of metal at high speed. The process emits small and narrow weld seams, with little thermal distortion. This process also applies in the large-scale production lines due to its ability to join fast welds, with controlled quality. The process has quickly become feasible in the modern industrial processes.
How does it work?
laser welding has high power thickness bringing about little warmth influenced zones and high warming and cooling rates. The spot size of the laser can differ between 0.2 mm and 13 mm, however, just littler sizes are utilized for welding. The profundity of infiltration is relative to the measure of intensity provided, but at the same time is reliant on the area of the point of convergence: entrance is expanded when the point of convergence is somewhat beneath the surface of the workpiece.
The process operates in two separate modes, conduction limited welding, and the keyhole welding process. The power density of the laser beam will determine the manner in which the interaction between the material and the laser spot will have. Conduction limited welding happens when the power density goes below 105W/cm2. The radiation of the laser is them absorbed at the surfaces of the material without penetration. This process, therefore, has a high width to depth ratio.
On the other hand, the keyhole mechanism utilizes more power densities. The laser beam will be on a specific spot and have the power density between > 106-107 W/cm2, causing the surface to vaporize before the heat quantities are rid of through conduction. Focusing the laser beam in this method will lead to penetration into the material, forming a cavity, referred to as the keyhole. This cavity will be full of plasma, the ionized metal vapor. The plasma will be responsible for the prevention of the collapse of the walls of the hole
A consistent or beat laser pillar might be utilized relying on the application. Millisecond-long heartbeats are utilized to weld thin materials, for example, extremely sharp edges while ceaseless laser frameworks are utilized for profound welds.
The market size of laser welding
During the period of 2017-2021 the global laser welding market has grown at a CAGR of 5.37%.This report was prepared on the base of in-depth market analysis with the assistance of industry experts.
Key vendors of this market include Emerson, IPG Photonics, O.R. Lasertechnologie, TRUMPF etc. Other famous dealers in this market are Golden Laser Jenoptik, Laserline, LaserStar Technologies, MECASONIC, Perfect Laser, GSI Group etc.
Applications of Laser Beam Welding
The most prominent use of laser welding is to unite the different parts of bodies and Chassis in the automotive industry. The more significant percentage of the Taylor-blanks joints, for example, are made using laser welding. The said joints do not have edge preparation and use straight welding, where the lasering process produces high-quality fittings. It is also generally used on thin parts that have no filler materials
Pros of Laser Welding
The process is versatile. The more laser welding is used in joining of parts together, the more it is adaptable to various materials such as titanium, aluminum, nickel alloys, carbon steel, stainless steel and plastics and despite the thickness, lasers can penetrate through all.
The weld that results from laser beam welding is clean, with no excesses or extra clam, making the work done look perfect.
There are minimal distortions, which in conventional welding are very common. The welds in laser beams are however very clean and precise as opposed to the regular kind, ensuring the chances of distortion are next to none.
There are Some Challenges to the Use of Laser Beams:
The process is a health concern. The health and safety of the user of laser beams are most notable at the eyes especially when you look directly into the laser. The excessive bright light emitted can lead to eye problems. The process could also cause severe burns to the skin especially when the laser comes into contact with the user, or any third party within range.
Laser use needs extensive training for one to operate it well. The excessive exercise is quite costly and time-consuming. Those who work without the proper training risk their health and that of other users around them.
The equipment in laser treatment is costly. The advanced process means that it costs a lot of money to purchase and operate it, owing to its complexity and effectiveness.
How to Do Laser Welding
The main focus in the laser welding process aims the beams at the surface of the intended workpiece. On the material surface, the rate of concentration of the beams converts into heat energy which will cause the said material to start melting. The surface conductivity is the process by which the progression of the thermal energy on the surface spreads across the material as it melts. However, despite the melting, the level of beam energy will still be lower than the vaporization temperature of the material in question. In the welding process, the material thickness is required to be at least 20mm. The higher the level of laser concentration on the surface, the higher the thermal energy produced.
Laser beam welding is better compared to the traditional forms of welding, such as solar light welding. It is usable in the air and can quickly focus and direct to the surface using its specialized optical lenses and mirrors. It is also safe to operate it from a considerable distance away from the workpiece, increasing safety measures.
Eric Parker is a Power Tool Expert from the USA. He completed his Bachelors' Degree from the Department of Mechanical Engineering, Stevens Institute of Technology in New Jersey. Now he is actively sharing his knowledge through toolsfreak.com