Laser Welding Applications
The process of laser welding has a variety of uses in commercial contexts and brings various benefits to the table when compared with traditional alternatives. From thick plate materials to slender wires used in sensitive, small scale electronic devices, there are a myriad of scenarios in which welding with lasers can be advantageous.
This is also an ever-evolving aspect of laser use in manufacturing, delivering both versatility and cost-effectiveness to those that use it. So that you can appreciate just how impressive laser welding can be, here is a look at a selection of the most appealing applications it offers.
Welding metals with laser technology
Although metals are not the only materials which can be welded, they are by far the most common to undergo this process. Indeed lasers have been deployed for this purpose for decades, making it a well-established aspect of many modern production lines.
The biggest obstacle, of course, comes with the need to combine metals which are either naturally repellent to one another (i.e. are dissimilar) or are unavoidably endowed with reflective surfaces. In both cases, creating a strong bond was tricky until the advent of fiber laser solutions. Thankfully the creation of high-frequency pulsed fiber lasers has helped to overcome this. Pulsed lasers may previously have only been appropriate for marking and engraving, but now welding and cutting metals is an option.
Understanding that laser welding can be used on metals is just the start, as there are numerous different industries in which the technologies are especially suitable because of the nature of the work involved.
The application of laser welding in the aerospace sector is a great example of this. Fiber lasers which can work with copper, alloys and other reflective metals make sense in everything from the construction of turbines to the assembly of craft designed for both terrestrial flight and space missions.
Indeed, the advent of fiber laser technology has allowed older welding methods to be retired in this industry, slashing production costs for organisations with closely scrutinised budgets and also catalysing manufacturing schedules.
Empowering electronics applications
With annual revenues projected to reach over $1.6 trillion, the consumer electronics market is continuing to grow at a steady rate. The use of laser welding is allowing many manufacturers to keep up with demand and also offer the iterative improvements to existing product lines which are essential to securing long term prosperity.
The reason that Fiber Laser welding goes hand in hand with electronics manufacturing is that it provides significantly more precision and accuracy, while also being able to operate on the microscopic scales that are necessary for this industry. Once again the ability to work with reflective substances without being hindered in any way also comes into the foreground here.
Laser welding allows for materials which are vulnerable to things like excessive heat or direct physical contact to be bonded safely and consistently. This allows designers and engineers to be as innovative and imaginative as they like when dreaming up the next big consumer electronics trend, without being limited by the tools that are available to them.
The rise of the passenger car was made possible thanks to the pioneering of mass production, although those early examples of automotive production lines were dramatically different in many ways to modern equivalents, even if the core principles are the same.
In the 21st century, making motor vehicles in the volumes necessary to meet market expectations is achievable in part thanks to laser welding. Welding with lasers as part of automotive manufacturing lets brands combine dissimilar metals at lower costs and in shorter timeframes. Likewise, with the dawn of the electric vehicle era, welding with lasers is more relevant than ever in the production of the batteries which power zero emissions cars, vans and trucks.
Medical sector usage
The application of laser welding to medical technology is worthwhile for all of the reasons mentioned above, from the precision to the efficiency of the process. However, there are also additional benefits which have a bigger impact in this industry.
Specifically, it is the non-contact nature of laser welding which means that exceptional levels of sterility can be preserved when products are being manufactured. Lots of different devices are created in this way, including pacemakers.
Get more info and advice from SPI Lasers
SPI Lasers is a leading designer and manufacturer of high quality fiber lasers, supplying many of the worlds prominent welding solutions providers, so if you want help and details from experts, please get in touch with us and we will do our best to assist. You can also check out our welding FAQs for quick answers to common welding-related questions.
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