Laser Welding of Metal

Control Micro Systems, Inc. (CMS Laser) has decades of experience designing laser welding machines for a wide range of metal production environments. As an industrial laser integrator, CMS Laser has created laser applications for metal welding ranging from low volume, hand-load welding machines to fully automated On-the-Fly laser machines that will integrate with your production line,

Laser Metal Welding (LMW) offers many advantages over traditional welding methods.

Advantages of Laser Welding for Metal Applications:

  • Non-Contact Welding – Laser welding puts less stress on the metal pieces. Because of the precise and uniform pulse energy of the laser, extra (i.e. wasted) heat input is minimal.
  • Seam Quality – Laser welding can produce extremely strong welds and can achieve hermetic seals where required. Using shield gas, discoloration is controlled and typically secondary processing is not required to achieve market ready weld appearance.
  • No Filler Material or Consumables Required – Laser welding does not require filler metals like methods such as TIG/MIG/ARC welding, soldering, and brazing to achieve strong welds. With exception of shield gas, there are no consumables such as nozzles, tips, electrodes or rods.
  • Easy Automation – Software controlled automation can easily be integrated into a laser welding machine. Parameter changes are quick and predictable.
  • Flexibility – Laser metal welding machines can be designed to accommodate many different sizes and shapes of parts with different weld paths. Compact head designs in conjunction with fiber delivery make robotic automation integration into laser systems straightforward. With the proper optics, variation in working distance is tolerable.

Laser Metal Welding Processes:

  • Heat Conduction Welding – One method for welding metals using laser energy is heat conduction welding. Used for butt and lap joints, conduction welding maintains a melted pool of metal below and just behind the moving laser. Beam mode and focal length affect the aspect ratio of the weld, but generally, conduction welds are wider and shallower than keyhole welds.
  • Keyhole Welding – In keyhole welding material is vaporized as well as melted. The plasma formed in at the front of the weld allows the laser to penetrate deeper. Controlling the speed and energy precisely produces a deep narrow weld with no pockets. Laser keyhole welding requires higher power density as compared to laser conduction welding.
  • Laser Spot Welding – Laser spot welding uses the techniques of laser conduction welding or laser keyhole welding. Depending on the thickness of the material, type of material, and size of the spot required single pulse, multiple pulse, or trepanning techniques may be used.

CMS Laser can design and manufacture a custom laser welding machine for your specific metal welding application. Contact us today to begin a no cost and no obligation laser welding test of your sample metal parts.