Fraunhofer IWS Dresden

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Dynamic beam shaping for high power laser applications

Laser beam shaping is an established method to adapt the power distribution to the specific requirements of a particular laser application. The first applications to use beam shaping are laser surface treatment applications, such as laser heat treatment. Dynamic beam shaping is more flexible compared to static beam shaping, so it allows a precise adjustment of laser power distribution, even during laser processing. Nowadays, dynamic beam shaping focuses more on narrow gap welding, the welding of hard-to-weld materials like aluminium alloys, and on thick plate cutting. Fast galvanometer scanners are currently used to provide appropriate beam shaping, but new techniques such as microelectromechanical system (MEMS) scanners are on the way.

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By Dave MacLellan, Executive Director, AILU

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Rachel Berkowitz explores the wealth of ways that textiles can be cut, engraved, perforated, and patterned with a laser

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Matthew Dale discovers that laser cooling is an undefined art, as thermal management firms turn to adaptable modular systems to meet individual customer demands

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After 29 years as executive director of the Laser Institute of America, Peter Baker has retired from the role. He looks back at a career filled with laser technology