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8 March 2005 A critical review of laser beam welding
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The use of lasers for welding has exhibited tremendous growth over the last decade for improving efficiency and reducing costs in a broad range of industries. Much of these successes are based on the development and availability of enabling technologies, which include improvements in process understanding, enhancements in laser sources and systems, and continued development and progression in process technology for laser beam welding of macro and micro components. The development of accurate numerical simulation techniques has provided an unprecedented opportunity to view the transient nature of laser processing. Advancements in laser source technology include the introduction of higher-power Nd:YAG lasers, utilizing diode pumped rods or disks, and fiber lasers, both providing the capability for fiber optic beam delivery. Although CO2 laser systems continue to dominate thick section welding, this influence will be challenged by emerging source technologies, namely high power fiber lasers. One of the most promising advances in laser process technology is laser-arc hybrid welding, which is seeing considerable interest worldwide and is currently being evaluated for various applications within heavy industry and manufacturing. The benefit of hybrid welding is the synergistic effect of improved processing rates and joint accommodation over either of the processes viewed separately. Other processing methods are also being developed to increase the utility of laser beam welding for industry, such as the use of dual beams and beam manipulation. The continued advancement in process knowledge is seen as a key element for facilitating the development of new processes and encouraging the acceptance of new source technology.
© (2005) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Richard P. Martukanitz "A critical review of laser beam welding", Proc. SPIE 5706, Critical Review: Industrial Lasers and Applications, (8 March 2005);


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