Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) Allows Sophisticated Trajectories while Producing High-Quality Laser Welds

Better-quality welds, reduced cost per part, and shorter cycle times are  industrial  goals  that  can  be achieved by using highly focused laser  light.  Precise  and  reliable dynamic  sensing  technology  is required to operate the automated processing laser without direct human manipulation to accomplish safety requirements.
Today, optical coherence tomography (OCT) has gained acceptance as a measurement technique with high precision and reproducibility. OCT as applied to laser welding has already made a step beyond laboratory use, being widely adapted to various laser heads in different branches of the joining industry. OCT brings laser welding to its proper target, ensuring high-quality welds and enabling the reduction of cycle times during welding along sophisticated trajectories or during positioning at challenging joints or low-dimensional e-mobility elements. OCT is beneficial for online omnidirectional seam tracking, exact nondestructive measurement of keyhole depth, and identification of faults and defects at the resulting seam.

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Implementing OCT for industrial weld monitoring

Dr Nataliya Deyneka-Dupriez describes the benefits that OCT can bring to weld monitoring, and highlights how the technology is starting to find applications in e-mobility.

"OCT technology can be successfully used for fast and exact localisation of hairpins, and fast quantitative quality assessment of the weld bead during processing."

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Tomorrow’s Advanced Technology for Laser Welding – Today

OCT is a perfect technique for seam tracking applications

Abstract

Optical coherence tomography (OCT) becomes a widely accepted technique for precise and consistent seam-guided laser  welding.  Being  advantageous due  to  its  operation  principle,  OCT has  gained  a  role  of  innovative  seam tracking  technology  for  highly  productive, cost-effective laser processing. The industrial tests deliver satisfactory results. Either remote laser welding of body-in-white or gap bridging, OCT is an unbeatable technique for the laser welding  applications  with  extended tracking limits.

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Advances of OCT Technology for Laser Beam Processing

Precision and quality during laser welding

Abstract

Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is an innovative sensor 3D measuring system for automated laser processing, in particular laser welding. It facilitates laser beam positioning, process monitoring, and quality control with the required precision and guarantees process flexibility, stability, and traceability. To ensure smooth seam tracking  for time- and cost-effective line production, Lessmüller  Lasertechnik OCT systems offer the automated recognition and digitalization of joints for precise lateral and axial positioning. It provides industrial solutions for the online inspection of the keyhole to enable consistent and high quality welds.

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