Since a few years, high brilliance laser sources find their way into laser material processing. Laser micro processing by
applying high brilliance laser radiation up to 3 kW of continuous wave laser power in combination with ultrafast beam
deflection systems has been successfully demonstrated in 2008 for the first time. In the fields of laser welding, high brilliant laser radiation was mainly used for micro welding, but up to now the macro range is still insufficiently investigated. Hence, this study reports on detailed investigations of high speed laser welding of different steel grades, performed with a high power single mode fiber laser source. The laser beam was deflected relative to the sample by using both a fast galvanometer scanner system with f-theta focusing objective and a linear axis in combination with a welding optic, respectively. In the study, the mainly process influencing parameters such as laser power, welding speed, thickness of the metal sheets, angle of incidence and laser beam spot size were varied in a wide range. The weld seam quality was evaluated by structural analyses, static tensile tests and EDX measurements. Finally, the laser welding process has been optimized for different weld seam geometries, for example bead-on-plate welds and butt welds.