Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Laser treatments yield smoother metal surfaces

Date:
September 26, 2013
Source:
The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR)
Summary:
The properties of metal surfaces, typically prone to corrosion, are now more controllable using laser processing.

Optical microscope cross-sections of the alloy surface show that increases in laser beam overlap during processing reduces the number of small cracks (top left, 25% overlap; top right, 50%; bottom left, 75%; and bottom right, 90%).
Credit: Copyright Elsevier 2013

Ever since the Bronze Age, metals have been cast in different shapes for different applications. Smooth surfaces that are resistant to corrosion are crucial for many of the present-day uses of cast metals, ranging from bio-implants to automotive parts. Yingchun Guan, from the A*STAR Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology (SIMTech) and her co-workers have shown how different laser-processing methods improve metal surfaces and protect them against corrosion.

Related Articles


Laser processing involves scanning a high-intensity laser beam multiple times across the surface of a metal. Each scan by the laser beam 'writes' a track in the surface, which partially melts the metal. Consecutive tracks can overlap -- the degree to which affects how well the melting caused by these tracks will smooth the surface of the metal. The scanning speed can also affect the surface melt.

Guan and co-workers investigated how different degrees of overlap between the tracks affect the surface properties of AZ91D -- a common magnesium alloy. "AZ91D is the most widely used magnesium alloy for the production of high-volume components for the automotive, electronics and telecommunications industries," Guan explains.

By examining cross-sections of AZ91D samples post-melt, the researchers found that the greater the degree of overlap between the tracks, the fewer the number of small cracks that developed during solidification (see image). According to Guan, this finding should be considered when processing metals destined for exposure to fluids, such as those that will be used in bio-implants.

The researchers also detected alterations in the alloy's composition through changes in the degree of laser-track overlap. Melted magnesium evaporates more readily than aluminum, and as the degree of laser-track overlap increased, it changed the composition of the alloy -- particularly in the larger areas of melt. Theoretical calculations by Guan and her co-workers described these kinetics accurately.

According to the team's model, a greater level of overlap provided a greater amount of heat, which improved the convection of the metals within the molten liquid and yielded a more homogeneous surface. Electrochemical tests by the team also confirmed that the more homogeneous the surface of a material, the more resistant it was to corrosion.

The team's approach, particularly the theoretical model, is applicable to assess laser processing of other alloys and compounds, Guan notes. As the surface structures affect not only the mechanical and chemical properties but also the electronic, thermal and optical parameters, these findings will be of relevance to metals used in a variety of applications.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Y.C. Guan, W. Zhou, Z.L. Li, H.Y. Zheng. Influence of overlapping tracks on microstructure evolution and corrosion behavior in laser-melt magnesium alloy. Materials & Design, 2013; 52: 452 DOI: 10.1016/j.matdes.2013.05.075

Cite This Page:

The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR). "Laser treatments yield smoother metal surfaces." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 September 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130926102055.htm>.
The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR). (2013, September 26). Laser treatments yield smoother metal surfaces. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130926102055.htm
The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR). "Laser treatments yield smoother metal surfaces." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130926102055.htm (accessed December 20, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Matter & Energy News

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Building Google Into Cars

Building Google Into Cars

Reuters - Business Video Online (Dec. 19, 2014) — Google's next Android version could become the standard that'll power your vehicle's entertainment and navigation features, Reuters has learned. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
AP Review: Nikon D750 and GoPro Hero 4

AP Review: Nikon D750 and GoPro Hero 4

AP (Dec. 19, 2014) — What to buy an experienced photographer or video shooter? There is some strong gear on the market from Nikon and GoPro. The AP's Ron Harris takes a closer look. (Dec. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) — A double-amputee makes history by becoming the first person to wear and operate two prosthetic arms using only his mind. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Navy Unveils Robot Fish

Navy Unveils Robot Fish

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Dec. 18, 2014) — The U.S. Navy unveils an underwater device that mimics the movement of a fish. Tara Cleary reports. Video provided by Reuters
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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

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