Industrial lasers: tools from the future

Aug. 25, 2014
When the industrial laser community talks about advanced manufacturing, it’s talking about the tools it has been making and using for decades--the tools just keep getting better--such as those on display at the Lasers for Manufacturing Event and discussed at the Lasers for Manufacturing Summit.  
Conard 720

When talking about advanced manufacturing, politicians seem to be thinking of some futuristic factories or half-understood new systems. Conversely, when the industrial laser community talks about advanced manufacturing, it’s talking about the tools it has been making and using for decades--the tools just keep getting better.

Just how much better is the subject of a new executive conference sponsored by the Laser Institute of America, working with PennWell's Industrial Laser Solutions magazine. This half-day summit takes place September 22, just before the start of the Lasers for Manufacturing Event (LME) in Schaumburg, IL.

The Laser for Manufacturing Summit includes a great lineup of speakers such as Terry Wohlers, of Wohlers Associates, on laser additive manufacturing; Mark Douglass of Longbow Research on market opportunities; Sasha Weiler from Trumpf on ultrafast lasers; and a special executive panel moderated by my colleague, David Belforte, chief editor of Industrial Laser Solutions, with Bill Shiner from IPG Photonics, Steve Capp from Laserage, Stan Ream from EWI, and Reinhardt Proprawe from Fraunhofer ILT.

Next day, in the exhibition hall, the Lasers for Manufacturing Event ( focuses on industrial laser materials processing and runs from September 23-24. It features global manufacturers of industrial lasers and related equipment, and includes talks on the state of the industry and additive manufacturing, and tutorials on the properties of lasers, laser welding, laser safety, and the economic justification for laser applications.

The LME is in its fourth year and, to my mind, has established itself as the best place in North America for industrial laser customers and vendors to meet, learn, and do business.

For more information on the Summit, visit the website:

About the Author

Conard Holton | Editor at Large

Conard Holton has 25 years of science and technology editing and writing experience. He was formerly a staff member and consultant for government agencies such as the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority and the International Atomic Energy Agency, and engineering companies such as Bechtel. He joined Laser Focus World in 1997 as senior editor, becoming editor in chief of WDM Solutions, which he founded in 1999. In 2003 he joined Vision Systems Design as editor in chief, while continuing as contributing editor at Laser Focus World. Conard became editor in chief of Laser Focus World in August 2011, a role in which he served through August 2018. He then served as Editor at Large for Laser Focus World and Co-Chair of the Lasers & Photonics Marketplace Seminar from August 2018 through January 2022. He received his B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania, with additional studies at the Colorado School of Mines and Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.

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