, Work title 🙁 Laser forming of sheet metals ).
Laser forming of sheet metal is an extremely flexible rapid modeling and low –volume constructing process. This process uses thermal distortion induced by laser rays to shape sheet metal into the required shape without the use of other tools or need for an external force. Use of laser is very effective and efficient owing to excellent energy efficiency, ease of control, no need for tools and its wide range of applications. This process is also very flexible in the sense that very many other applications such as brazing, soldering and hardening can be performed through the same apparatus.
There are several types of lasers including but not limited to carbon (iv) oxide lasers, Nd:YAG lasers and diode lasers. Carbon (iv) oxide and “neodymium-dopedyttrium aluminium garnet” (Nd:YAG) lasers are technologies that are well developed. Research on these types of lasers use a power ranging between 100 kilowatt level watts to kilo watt level. The amount of power used depends on the forming conditions and the thickness of the material. However, Diode lasers have become the most preferred lasers in industrial applications due to their higher efficiency and lower cost in terms of energy consumption. Diode lasers are also easier to integrate within production lines owing to their reduced sizes. Though there has been application of diode lasers in industrial applications, it still remains within a lesser magnitude since its application to High-power level is still low.
Basic principle: Laser metal sheet formation applies the scientific principle of plastic metal deformation to produce bending on metal sheet. A metal sheet is irradiated with a high-power laser radiation with intent of producing a temperature gradient in between the metal area under the laser irradiation and the other area of the material in the neighborhood. This continuous change in temperature gradient brings about expansion followed by contraction but in a non-uniform