Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Instant Control For Laser Welding

Date:
March 15, 2009
Source:
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft
Summary:
A novel camera system has 25,000 processors integrated in its pixels which work together to analyze images the instant they are taken -- over ten times faster than a computer. This allows to automatically adjust the output of a laser as it performs welding operations.

An innovative control system adapts the laser output instantly to the welding situation.
Credit: Fraunhofer IPM

Car doors are usually assembled from several sections of sheet metal which are welded together by laser. The laser beam moves over the slightly overlapping sheets and melts them in a spot measuring several tenths of a millimeter, producing a so called full penetration hole that closes again when the laser beam moves on.

It is most important for the laser output power to be set correctly – if it is too low the strength of the welding connection is reduced because it does not extend over the full cross section of the metal sheets, if it is too high the laser cuts right through them.

Until now welders have gauged the right laser output by trial and error and then kept it constant. A complicating factor exists, however, in that the protective glass gets dirty after a while and lets less laser light through onto the metal. If this happens earlier than usual, hours can pass before it is noticed and the metal sheets may not be properly welded. Today, welding processes are only monitored without adjustment of the laser power because the achievalble frame rate of about thousand evaluated images per second is not sufficient. For a closed loop control, frame rates of more than 10 kilohertz – equivalent to 10,000 images per second – are needed for a robust surveillance of the rapidly moving full penetration hole.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Physical Measurement Techniques IPM in Freiburg have now developed a control system for laser welding processes which adapts the output to the given situation.

"Our system analyzes 14,000 images per second and uses the acquired data to adjust the laser output," explains IPM project manager Andreas Blug.

So how does the system manage to analyze the images more than ten times faster than conventional software? "We use special cameras in which a tiny processor is integrated in each pixel. All these processors – 25,000 in total – work simultaneously. In conventional image processing systems the data are handled consecutively by just a small number of computer processors," says Blug.

The new systems are referred to as "Cellular Neural Networks" (CNN). Just a few microseconds after the image is taken the camera delivers an analyzed picture of the contours of the full penetration hole. For small holes the system increases the output, for large ones it reduces it. "In developing this adjustment system we have achieved the first industrial application of CNN technology," says Blug. A prototype already exists, and the researchers now intend to test the system in production.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. "Instant Control For Laser Welding." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 March 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090309105032.htm>.
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. (2009, March 15). Instant Control For Laser Welding. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090309105032.htm
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. "Instant Control For Laser Welding." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090309105032.htm (accessed April 23, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Is North Korea Planning Nuclear Test #4?

Is North Korea Planning Nuclear Test #4?

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) South Korean officials say North Korea is preparing to conduct another nuclear test, but is Pyongyang just bluffing this time? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
China Falls for 4x4s at Beijing Auto Show

China Falls for 4x4s at Beijing Auto Show

AFP (Apr. 22, 2014) The urban 4x4 is the latest must-have for Chinese drivers, whose conversion to the cult of the SUV is the talking point of this year's Beijing auto show. Duration: 00:40 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Lytro Introduces 'Illum,' A Professional Light-Field Camera

Lytro Introduces 'Illum,' A Professional Light-Field Camera

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) The light-field photography engineers at Lytro unveiled their next innovation: a professional DSLR-like camera called "Illum." Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
3 Reasons Why Harley Davidson Is Selling Tons of Epic Hogs

3 Reasons Why Harley Davidson Is Selling Tons of Epic Hogs

TheStreet (Apr. 22, 2014) Sales of motorcycles have continued to ride back from the depths of hell known as the Great Recession. Excluding scooters, sales of motorcycles increased 3% in 2013. In units, however, at 465,000 sold last year, the total remained about 50% below the peak hit in 2007. Industry leader Harley Davidson’s shareholders have benefited both by the industry recovery and positive headlines emanating from the company. Belus Capital Advisors CEO Brian Sozzi takes you beyond the headlines of the motorcycle maker. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins