IPG Photonics reports thick-plate welding results with 20-kW fiber laser

Dec. 12, 2007
December 12, 2007, Dublin, Ireland--IPG Photonics announced that its application center in Germany achieved record high-quality deep-penetration welding on thick stainless steel plates at rapid speeds.

December 12, 2007, Dublin, Ireland--IPG Photonics announced that its application center in Germany achieved record high-quality deep-penetration welding on thick stainless steel plates at rapid speeds.

By using IPG's 20-kW continuous wave 1070-nm commercial fiber laser, the company says it is now possible to weld 1-in. 304 stainless steel at a speed of 0.85 m/min and 3/4 samples at a speed of 2 m/min using a 200-micron fiber cable with a 420-micron focus spot size.

In other experiments, IPG was able to produce high-quality welds on 2-in. 304 stainless steel samples by applying laser beams from both sides with a total penetration depth of 54-56 mm per pass.

IPG-s YLR-20,000 fiber laser is the only laser in the world that can produce 20 kW of CW output at 1 micron. Because of the laser s record electro-optic efficiency, high reliability, simplicity to use, compact design, and low maintenance operation, it has the potential to become a tool for indoor and outdoor thick metal-based applications, the company noted.

The new results confirm that IPG-s 20-kW laser can have a major impact on applications requiring deep penetration welds that previously could only be obtained with very expensive electron beam welding machines requiring a full or partial vacuum, according to William Shiner, IPG-s Vice President Industrial Markets. Heavy industry applications, such as shipbuilding, pipelines, gas tanks, aerospace, and construction, can now weld thick metals outdoors or very large pieces at the highest power levels with the flexible beam delivery of IPG-s lasers.

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