At the JEC World Composite Show in Paris in March 2018, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be focusing on the latest trends and innovations in laser machining of composites. Among other things, researchers at the booth shared with the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL) will demonstrate how lasers can be used for joining, structuring, cutting and drilling composite materials.
No other industry has attracted as much public attention to composite materials as the automotive industry, which along with the aerospace industry is a driver of innovation and growth. In other industries too, composites are now becoming increasingly important. Yet users all face the same issue: the problem of finding suitable processing methods for their products.
Lasers change the whole process chain
Suitable for applications such as welding, cutting, ablation, drilling and thermoplastic tape laying, etc., this is where lasers come in. This puts lasers in competition with classical processes. Dr.-Ing. Alexander Olowinsky, Group Manager Micro Joining at Fraunhofer ILT, Aachen, says: “When it comes to cutting and drilling, mechanical techniques such as milling, sawing or water-jet cutting are typically employed. For joining materials, adhesive bonding is the preferred method.”
Read more: A Holistic View of Laser Machining