New advances in laser additive manufacturing have prompted TWI to develop software to manage the process for a growing number of applications.
Processes such as EHLA cladding technology are on the brink of revolutionising laser material deposition, offering greatly increased rates of production, reduced energy consumption, improved materials consumption, and a lower environmental impact than many traditional methods.
However, for all the benefits these advances look set to deliver, there is a need to address sensor and software capabilities to measure parameters such as beam quality and power to provide feedback about the status of the equipment being used to ensure optimum performance at all times.
While the software is not yet available on the market, there is every expectation that this will change in the future. There is already interest from a range of industries including aerospace, oil and gas, and power, with repair applications also set to be a large part of the work that these cost-effective, high volume products can solve with the generally decreasing price of laser hardware.