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9/19/2011

High-Speed Laser Drilling With Air Flow Testing for 0.2-mm Holes

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The FlowComp closed-loop hardware and software feature from Prima North America's Laserdyne Systems combines laser drilling with air flow measurement on the company’s 795 and 450 multi-axis laser systems.  

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The FlowComp closed-loop hardware and software feature from Prima North America's Laserdyne Systems combines laser drilling with air flow measurement on the company’s 795 and 450 multi-axis laser systems.
 
The software first records air flow test results and then adjusts the size of laser-drilled holes without operator input to ensure that they are drilled within tolerance. The end result is consistent, high-speed processing within specification and with real-time data logging to verify compliance, the company says.
 

The software has application in the manufacture of turbine engine components, which are designed with shaped holes and holes positioned at very shallow angles (10 degrees) to the part surface in order to minimize fuel use, noise and pollution. These holes may be as small as 0.008" (0.2 mm) in diameter, making them challenging to laser drill at very high speed. The tight hole tolerances benefit from the ability to make hole size adjustments smaller than 0.001" (0.025 mm). The software feature, along with Optical Focus Control and other features, ensures that there is minimal laser drilling variability by keeping the focused laser beam diameter, location of drilling and depth of focus required to maintain constant beam quality. 

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