When one improves upon already top-notch engine and car parts (and the process therein), the results are something that most people wouldn’t expect. This is applicable for any advancement in production. Updated technology makes huge improvements in manufacturing.
We here at American Hydroformers love new technology. We respect and revere those who innovate and adapt, those who have an expanded vision to take something that works well and make it even better. There is something greater that can be said for people who take an existing idea and improve on it. They are pioneers.
Take the recent advancement in laser welding, how it has helped tube production, hydroforming, and how it has aided in making better parts and lighter automobiles by producing continuously welded tubes.
European company Plimet has taken a conventional way of welding, induction welding, and improved its completion rate and reduced its heat transfer, while exhibiting a drastic decrease in energy output.
Currently, laser welding machines are being used and they are becoming a respected alternative. Plimet has been using CO2 laser welding machines for several years with good results, as weld seam quality has increased rapidly. Welding speed over 10m/min can be achieved and the process stability is comparable to the robust induction systems.
The 8.5kW fiber-guided diode laser being used also uses less power than the traditional induction method, which traditionally uses a CO2 laser.
Further, the diode laser can work with larger areas, allow for higher tube tolerance, and brings a much stabler end product result.
As tests have proven, the tube durability and weld seam quality can expand to 20-percent of its diameter without cracking. Further, there is no spatter inside the tube. All advancements, all positive.
This process, which was recently adopted into Plimet’s production line in their European plants, is currently available to consumers. It offers high quality, low-cost, and a reduced running cost.
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