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Proceedings Paper

Comparing flat top and Gaussian focal beam shapes when micromachining steel
Author(s): Todd E. Lizotte; Orest Ohar
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Paper Abstract

Laser micromachining, drilling and marking is extensively used within the aerospace, automotive and firearms industries. The unique properties of lasers make them ideal tools for micromachining a wide diversity of materials, including steel alloys [1]. We describe the results of micromachining of low carbon steel and stainless steel alloys, using a high powered diode pumped solid state (DPSS) laser operating at a wavelength of 355nm. The laser was configured with beam conditioning optics to produce either a flat top beam or a Gaussian output which was then sent through a galvanometer scanner and telecentric lens beam delivery system. This paper outlines the interrelationship of process variables when micromachining fine features in steel and stainless steel alloys. Process variables measured included the optimum laser focus plane, energy density, galvanometer scan rate, and pulse overlap and focal spot diameter. Optimum process performance was evaluated based on a dimensional comparison of the micromachined features from each test coupon, including uniformity and surface roughness of the micromachined surface and the minimization of surface irregularities (stalagmite type slag / debris / corn row patterns) and taper angle of the micromachined feature side walls.

Paper Details

Date Published: 7 September 2011
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 8130, Laser Beam Shaping XII, 81300G (7 September 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.895955
Show Author Affiliations
Todd E. Lizotte, Hitachi Via Mechanics USA, Inc. (United States)
Orest Ohar, Hitachi Via Mechanics USA, Inc. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8130:
Laser Beam Shaping XII
Andrew Forbes; Todd E. Lizotte, Editor(s)

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