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  • Gentle high-temperature crystallization: Fraunhofer ILT, together with Fraunhofer ISIT and IST, has developed a selective, laser-based crystallization process for the manufacture of MEMS sensor units directly on active circuits.
    © Fraunhofer ILT, Aachen, Germany.

    Micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS) have proven themselves a billion times over as sensors in smart cars, cell phones and mini insulin pumps, among other things. To make these MEMS even more powerful in the future, researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen have developed a CMOS-compatible deposition and laser crystallization process in collaboration with the Fraunhofer ISIT and IST. In contrast to other common processes, this new process eliminates the need for wires and solder joints, an advantage that can significantly reduce the component size and enhance the sensor performance.

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  • Fraunhofer ILT expands cooperation with Korea

    Press Release / September 07, 2022

    Prof. Dr. Constantin Häfner, Director of Fraunhofer ILT (left) and Dr. Sang Jin Park, President of KIMM, at the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on May 5, 2022 in Aachen.
    © AKL e.V. / Andreas Steindl.

    The Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen has been cooperating with the Korea Institute of Machinery and Materials KIMM for years, for example, in projects on laser welding or micromaterial processing. Now that the institutes have signed a Memorandum of Understanding, this cooperation will become even more effective. In the future, the partners plan to work on environmentally friendly manufacturing processes for electromobility and new storage technologies, among other things.

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  • In the “Joint Application Lab” of Hamamatsu and Fraunhofer ILT, manufacturing processes can be investigated using a scanner-based process head with an integrated high-power SLM.
    © Fraunhofer ILT, Aachen, Germany.

    Together with Hamamatsu, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen has set up an application lab for advanced laser material processing with ultrashort pulsed (USP) laser radiation. In Aachen, the partners jointly developed an industrial processing SLM-head that can use customized, dynamic beam shaping combined with large laser average output powers for a wide range of applications. The applied, new Spatial Light Modulator from Hamamatsu can be operated up to 150 watts of average output power.

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  • When a laser collar tames the arc

    Press Release / August 30, 2022

    The new COLLAR Hybrid Additive Manufacturing process relies on a combination of arc and laser deposition.
    © Fraunhofer ILT, Aachen, Germany / Volker Lannert.

    An example of hybrid technology in its purest form has been developed and built by the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT for the DVS research project “KoaxHybrid.” In Aachen, the institute engineers have developed a new optical system with glass substrates and an arc torch which unites gas metal arc (GMA) welding and laser material deposition with an annular beam, thus creating a completely new process. Interested parties can find out how the COLLAR Hybrid process can be used to increase the welding speed and the deposition rate in metallic 3D printing at a specialist congress organized by DVS - Deutscher Verband für Schweißen und verwandte Verfahren e. V. (German Welding Society) from September 19 to 21 in Koblenz.

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  • At the "5th Conference on Laser Polishing LaP 2022", international experts will discuss new approaches to laser-based polishing and deburring. Here: fused silica lens ground (left) and laser polished (right). A laser-polished component made of tool steel can be seen through the laser-polished lens.
    © Fraunhofer ILT, Aachen, Germany.

    Technical details on laser-based polishing and deburring attracted more than 70 participants from all over the world to a virtual trip to Aachen in 2020. Due to the uncertain travel situation of participants from abroad, the "5th Conference on Laser Polishing" will again take place virtually for participants. 10 speakers from Germany and abroad will give an overview of the worldwide state of knowledge in the field of laser polishing on the afternoon of October 12 and 13, 2022. The event has advanced to become a recognized scientific platform for experts from all over the world. Registrations are possible until September 26.

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  • In the “LAR3S” project, two institutes from the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft and one from the Max-Planck-Gesellschaft are working together on processes for manufacturing preforms for hollow-structure fibers with new geometrical shapes.
    © Fraunhofer ILT, Aachen, Germany.

    Two institutes from the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft and one from the Max-Planck-Gesellschaft launched the joint project “LAR3S” on March 1, 2022. In this project, they are taking a completely new approach to producing three-dimensional photonic components with lasers, focusing on selective laser-induced etching and inverse laser drilling. A key goal is to achieve processes and procedures that can be automated to a large extent.

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  • Virtual chain reactions - live, in color and in person / 2022

    Not without my AI

    Review AKL'22 / July 19, 2022

    High-productivity 3D printing has been made possible by using EHLA technology in a parallel kinematic system and in a modified 5-axis CNC prototype. With the parallel kinematics, for example, the first components made of 316L stainless steel could be printed quickly and reliably at 1.7 kg/h and at a feed rate of 40 m/min.
    © Fraunhofer ILT, Aachen, Germany.

    Many industries are ready to break new ground in production with lasers. To do this, users and suppliers must reconcile digitalization and sustainability, ecology and economy. As an important means to this end, lasers can be integrated into the emerging process chains so that they interact with the entire upstream and downstream processes, saving both time and money. The more than 520 participants at the AKL'22 International Laser Technology Congress in Aachen learned how the laser community is already proactively tackling these tasks.

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  • Copper is often used in electromobility, a material that can be processed at greater stability with blue or green lasers than with infrared lasers.
    © Fraunhofer ILT, Aachen, Germany.

    After having to take a pandemic break of four years, the industrial laser technology community met at “AKL'22 – International Laser Technology Congress” in Aachen from May 4 to 6, 2022. The industry is doing well, and the biggest trend is the extensive digitalization of processes. At the same time, common beam sources are being pushed to ever new levels of peak performance. New to the conference program was the Quantum Technology & Photonics Forum, where major German companies presented an amazing range of topics.

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  • Laser Technology for Climate Research

    Press Release / May 24, 2022

    The diode-pumped alexandrite laser is a compact device developed for studying the atmosphere up to heights of more than 100 km.
    © Fraunhofer ILT, Aachen, Germany.

    At the LASER World of PHOTONICS trade fair, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT presented new laser systems it developed for researching the Earth's atmosphere. The fair was held in Munich from April 26 to 29, 2022 for the first time in three years, and the mood among the 900 exhibitors and 15,000 visitors was ebullient. Indeed, many showed great interest in the systems Fraunhofer ILT exhibited: lasers for space applications as well as for ground-based measurements.

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  • Wet-chemical decoupled component.
    © Fraunhofer ILT, Aachen, Germany.

    “We have succeeded in industrializing and digitalizing additive manufacturing (AM) for automotive series production.” With pride, 12 project partners announce that this has been doubly successful with IDAM (Industrialization and Digitalization of Additive Manufacturing). Three years ago, the consortium of SMEs, large companies and research institutions started with the common goal of revolutionizing metallic 3D printing in the field of automotive series production. Together, they set up a digitally networked, fully automated 3D printing production line at two locations at once and prepared it for automotive series production. From now on, at least 50,000 components per year can be manufactured cost-effectively at the BMW Group sites in Munich and at GKN Powder Metallurgy in Bonn using the laser powder bed fusion (LPBF) process, as well as more than 10,000 individual and spare parts. Due to the modular design of the blueprint of this line, the annual number of units can be further scaled as required.

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