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Hamamatsu releases spatial light modulator for laser metal machining

Hamamatsu LSE

The X15213-03CL, which allows free control of laser beam patterns, is designed for laser beam machining of metal. (Image: Hamamatsu Photonics)

Hamamatsu Photonics has released a Liquid Crystal On Silicon Spatial Light Modulator (LCOS-SLM) for laser metal machining, which it says has the world’s highest light resistance.

The X15213-03CL is an optical component designed for laser beam machining of metal materials which also allows free control of laser beam patterns and vastly boosts production efficiency when used for specific applications. This includes metal 3D printing, where metal powder is sintered by laser to form solidified parts for aircraft and transport equipment, as well as laser metal welding and cutting.

According to Hamamatsu, the X15213-03CL delivers the world’s highest power-handling capability, up to 700W, thanks to the firm’s thermal design technology which enhances heat dissipation performance.

The LCOS-SLM is a reflective spatial light modulator that controls laser beam patterns by adjusting the tilt of liquid crystals, changing the phase of the laser beam. High-power laser beams used for metal machining can cause a temperature rise in the liquid crystal layer, leading to a drop in device performance. To address this issue, the X15213-03CL LCOS-SLM incorporates a sapphire plate as the cover glass, which improves heat dissipation due to sapphire's higher thermal conductivity. Additionally, the LCOS-SLM package includes a filler with high thermal conductivity and an optimised internal structure, further enhancing the heat dissipation efficiency of the cover glass.

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Micromachining, Welding, Laser cutting

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