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Proceedings Paper

Effects of different gas environments on CO2 and Nd:YAG laser welding process efficiencies
Author(s): Jose Greses; Claire Y. Barlow; Paul A. Hilton; William M. Steen
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Paper Abstract

When laser welding mild steel under high power densities, vaporized material is ejected from the keyhole and forms a plume/plasma above the weld pool. In previous studies on plume formation and extent of ionization, the influence of the laser wavelength and the gas environment has been observed. In this study a comparison between CO2 and Nd:YAG laser welding has been performed using the same energy density (approximately 1.24 MW/cm2, produced using 3.5 kW of power and a focal spot size of 0.6 mm) in He, Ar and N2 gas environments and in vacuum. Plume/plasma evolution was recorded with high-speed video at 9000 frames/second and these images have been correlated with the characteristics of the weld cross-section. The fusion and heat-affected zone profiles have been measured to analyze the melting efficiency at different processing speeds. The temperatures and electron densities in the plume/plasma have also been calculated by spectroscopic methods to estimate the losses caused by the plume/plasma development. By analyzing the differences in the weld shape profiles and the plume/plasma behavior, the temporal evolution of the laser welding process efficiency was also obtained.

Paper Details

Date Published: 3 March 2003
PDF: 6 pages
Proc. SPIE 4831, First International Symposium on High-Power Laser Macroprocessing, (3 March 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.486500
Show Author Affiliations
Jose Greses, Univ. of Cambridge (United Kingdom)
Claire Y. Barlow, Univ. of Cambridge (United Kingdom)
Paul A. Hilton, TWI Ltd. (United Kingdom)
William M. Steen, Univ. of Cambridge (United Kingdom)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4831:
First International Symposium on High-Power Laser Macroprocessing
Isamu Miyamoto; Kojiro F. Kobayashi; Koji Sugioka; Reinhart Poprawe; Henry Helvajian, Editor(s)

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