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Five Axis Laser Welding for


Laser welding technology overview. A History of success. Applications and benefits ... Medical Pacemakers, Implants, Surgical Instruments ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Five Axis Laser Welding for

Five Axis Laser Welding for Repair of Turbine
Engine Components
NCMS/CTMA Symposium Track 1 Terry L.
VanderWert PRIMA North America, Inc.
  • Laser welding technology overview
  • A History of success
  • Applications and benefits
  • Repair applications
  • Potential benefits
  • Barriers
  • Potential projects
  • Summary

Laser Welding A History of Success
Automotive Body-in-White, Gear box,
Sensors Medical Pacemakers, Implants,
Surgical Instruments Electronics Hybrid
packages, Sensors, Transducers Military
Microwave devices, IR Sensors,
Gyroscope Aerospace Fuselage Panels,
Sensors Turbine Engine Components
70 m laser welded joint
High speed
Consistent quality
Negligible distortion
Minimal heat effect
Application Repair of Turbine Engine Components
Growing Success in Aerospace
  • Weld repair of worn blade tips, knife edge seals,
    rotary seals
  • Weld new sections of blades, NGVs
  • Weld sheet metal sections of combustors

Growing Success in Aerospace
Application - Aircraft Fuselage Panel Stringer
Military jets 2,000/lb/100,000 hours
  • Reduced weight
  • 1 lb on the engine 5-10 lbs on the wing

Source Mendez, P. F., Eagar, T. W., New Trends
in Welding in the Aeronautic Industry, 2nd
Conference of New Manufacturing Trends, Bilbao,
Spain, November 19-20, 2002.
Applications and Benefits for AircraftFuselage
Panel Stringer Welding
  • Reduced weight (fuel savings)
  • Eliminate fasteners and sealing material
  • Modify designs to account for lower heat affected
  • Reduced costs Welded joint made in half the
    time of a riveted joint.
  • Improved reliability
  • No rivets to corrode or fatigue
  • No moisture traps

Potential Benefits of Laser Welding for Repair
  • Flexible
  • Applicable to a wide range of metals and alloys
    and to a wide range of components
  • Sheet metal welding ( cutting drilling)
  • Low distortion produces near net shape - means
    minimum post-weld machining and blending
    operations for repaired components
  • Readily automated addresses growing shortage of
    skilled labor/welders

Barriers to Laser Welding in Repair Applications
  • Process not qualified
  • Highly concentrated beam creates demand for good
    joint fit-up prior to and during welding.
  • Penetration limited by laser power for autogenous
    welding processes.
  • High capital equipment costs most often demands
    high utilization requires high volume
    applications or multiple applications

Source Industrial Laser Processes An
Introduction, AMT Laser Systems Product Group,
Potential Projects
  • Baffle plate welding
  • Automated seam tracking/in-situ weld quality
  • Hybrid laser/arc welding

Baffle Plate Welding
  • Objective Extend laser welding of baffle plates
    to repair applications.
  • Challenges Tooling designed to address design
    (joint fit-up joint type that changes with
  • Potential return
  • Improved yield less scrap, rework
  • Improved process repeatability
  • Reduced cost

Automated Seam Tracking -Weld Quality Monitoring
  • Objective Integrate adaptive tools to reliably
    track the weld joint and monitor weld quality
  • Challenges
  • High speed machine motion
  • Varying surface conditions
  • Laser weld plume and ejection of material
  • Potential return
  • Greatly reduced set-up times - greater equipment
  • Higher reliability - reduced inspection costs
  • Reduced tooling costs

Hybrid Laser/Arc Welding
  • Objective Adapt hybrid laser arc welding
    process to repair applications.
  • Challenges Integration and control of the laser
    and arc welding equipment develop weld process.
  • Potential return
  • Greater flexibility wider range of applications
  • Higher weld speeds
  • Improved tolerance to joint fit-up

Source Moore, P.L., et. al., Development of
Laser, and Laser/Arc Hybrid Welding for Land
Pipeline Applications.
SummaryLaser Welding - An Enabling Technology
  • Laser welding is gaining traction as a means for
    aircraft and turbine engine manufacturers to
    reduce weight and production costs, and increase
    product quality.
  • Consistent quality reduced scrap, rework,
  • Low distortion and high quality welds.
  • Fast relative to conventional joining processes.
  • Multi-axis laser welding systems with adaptive
    controls can provide maximum versatility and
    minimum set-up times.
  • PRIMA North Americas experience in laser welding
    and integrated multi-axis laser systems can be
    valuable in adapting this technology to repair
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