Laser beam welding
Laser beam welding is a widely used industrial process and offers significant advantages over competing processes due to its high energy density and contactless energy input. The research work of the Department of Production Engineering deals with process and system technology, the material as well as the beam-substance interaction in order to develop and implement innovative approaches to increase the processing speeds, the achievable seam qualities as well as the processing of materials suitable for welding under certain conditions.
Production of polymer-metal hybrid joints
The thermal joining of metals with thermoplastics is a new type of process that can be carried out by means of laser joining as well as resistance spot welding. Applications range from the automotive industry to machine and plant construction to "white goods" in household appliance technology. Thermal joining enables the direct production of a hybrid composite without additional joining elements or adhesives and allows the simultaneous use of both materials for the implementation of optimized component structures. The main focus of the research is on linking process design and the resulting material properties, aging and fatigue behaviour, as well as fundamental considerations of the interface and bonding mechanism.
Metallography and materials analysis
The metallographic and materialographic analysis of samples and customer components is essential for the work carried out at the Department of Production Engineering. In addition to the target preparation of a wide variety of materials, including aluminium alloys, steels, copper and plastics, further analyses are performed. Access to further equipment, including scanning electron microscope, X-ray diffractometer or laser scanning microscope as well as other equipment is possible via the Institute for Micro- and Nanotechnologies MacroNano®.
Additive manufacturing (DED-arc, WAAM)
Additive manufacturing with arc welding processes such as GMAW, TIG or plasma processes represents a resource-efficient and economical option for the production of complex 3D components. The use of filler materials in wire or powder form enables buildup rates of several kg/h, which means that the production of large-volume components can be addressed. The Production Technology Group is mainly focused on the control of energy input and the resulting process-material interactions. The WAAM process (Wire Arc Additive Manufacturing) can be used to process almost all metallic materials in the form of wire.
Beam analysis and power measurement
On the one hand, the intensity distribution of the laser beam can be deliberately manipulated by optical elements. On the other hand, deviations, e.g. a focus shift, often occur in practice due to contamination or the effect of the thermal lens. The precise knowledge of the beam profile, the power distribution as well as the power densities is essential for consistent results. In addition to devices for caustic and power measurement of continuously operated beam sources, there is also the possibility of time-resolved power measurement of pulsed laser beam sources.