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Proceedings Paper

Laser surface texturing of cast iron steel: dramatic edge burr reduction and high speed process optimisation for industrial production using DPSS picosecond lasers
Author(s): David Bruneel; Andrew Kearsley; Dimitris Karnakis
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Paper Abstract

In this work we present picosecond DPSS laser surface texturing optimisation of automotive grade cast iron steel. This application attracts great interest, particularly in the automotive industry, to reduce friction between moving piston parts in car engines, in order to decrease fuel consumption. This is accomplished by partially covering with swallow microgrooves the inner surface of a piston liner and is currently a production process adopting much longer pulse (microsecond) DPSS lasers. Lubricated interface conditions of moving parts require from the laser process to produce a very strictly controlled surface topography around the laser formed grooves, whose edge burr height must be lower than 100 nm. To achieve such a strict tolerance, laser machining of cast iron steel was investigated using an infrared DPSS picosecond laser (10ps duration) with an output power of 16W and a repetition rate of 200 kHz. The ultrashort laser is believed to provide a much better thermal management of the etching process. All studies presented here were performed on flat samples in ambient air but the process is transferrable to cylindrical geometry engine liners. We will show that reducing significantly the edge burr below an acceptable limit for lubricated engine production is possible using such lasers and remarkably the process window lies at very high irradiated fluences much higher that the single pulse ablation threshold. This detailed experimental work highlights the close relationship between the optimised laser irradiation conditions as well as the process strategy with the final size of the undesirable edge burrs. The optimised process conditions are compatible with an industrial production process and show the potential for removing extra post)processing steps (honing, etc) of cylinder liners on the manufacturing line saving time and cost.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 July 2015
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 9657, Industrial Laser Applications Symposium (ILAS 2015), 96570G (1 July 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2176204
Show Author Affiliations
David Bruneel, Oxford Lasers Ltd. (United Kingdom)
Andrew Kearsley, Oxford Lasers Ltd. (United Kingdom)
Dimitris Karnakis, Oxford Lasers Ltd. (United Kingdom)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9657:
Industrial Laser Applications Symposium (ILAS 2015)
Mike Green; Cath Rose, Editor(s)

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