ALT has a lot of experience with respect to understanding the benefits of laser welding. We uniquely understand the issues associated with welding parts that to date have not been candidates for laser welding. Typical keyhole laser welding is considered a precision process requiring a very tight fit-up, similar to E-beam welding. There has to be enough materials melted to close the gap and produce a high integrity welded joint.
Laser welding eliminates most low cost parts from the process due to the fact that the parts have to be machined to present an interference type joint or fit-up. The industry default is to use a TIG and PTA process in order to achieve a robust production welding process, but what they lose is the cost savings gained from being able to use thinner gauges enabled by a distortionless welding process.
The amount of melted material is directly related to the amount of distortion. The laser welding process sits at the welding fit-up gap tolerance requirement window between traditional TIG and PTA and “keyhole” processes such as laser and E-beam. Therefore it can weld very thin materials, even foils consistently.
Typical process speeds achieved with laser are 3 times faster than TIG or PTA. Since the weld nugget is smaller, the distortion is also significantly improved thus allowing for thinner gauges, whilst simultaneously eliminating the requirement of post processing
Advantages of laser welding
Small heat affected zone
Laser welding application
Stainless Steel heat exchangers
Distortion critical thin shell assemblies
Thin gauge parts, foils
Thin gauge tubing
Thin gauge metal boxes