High Power Diode Lasers: Systems for the Industry

With high power diode lasers, Laserline offers industry-appropriate system solutions for laser material processing – from beam generation to workpiece. 

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With high power diode lasers, Laserline offers industry-appropriate system solutions for laser material processing – from beam generation to workpiece. 

With more than 5,000 installations, the high-power lasers of Laserline are among the most successful beam sources for industrial applications in the multi kilowatt range. Modular design, high efficiency, and very high reliability at low maintenance are what our customers appreciate throughout the world.

The Diode Laser Concepts – a Paradigm Shift

The permanent development of fiber-coupled diode technologies have seen major breakthroughs in the company for more than 20 years now. The first conventional solid-state lasers or gas lasers in material processing were huge stationary devices with low efficiency, used for cutting and welding metals. Comparable to groundbreaking changes in the electronics industry in the middle of the last century when the tube was replaced by the transistor, today there is a similar change with industrial laser systems such as high performance semi-conductor lasers or diode-based laser systems. Today, Laserline has achieved performance up to the multi-kilowatt-range with its high-power lasers. Furthermore, there is continuous development towards more and more brilliant beam quality.

The Diode Laser - Structure and Properties

Diode lasers generate the laser light in a semiconductor wafer, which is supplied with energy by electric current.These laser diodes called semiconductors are used in different configurations. There are solutions in which individual laser diodes are used (single emitters) as well as the mounting of many of these laser diodes on a so-called bar (diode bar). To turn a laser diode into a diode laser, several bars are stacked on top of each other and several stacks are optically combined. In this way, the power can be scaled form a single laser diode to high-performance systems. Laserline's high-power diode lasers are designed according to this principle and only bars are used.

An important parameter of lasers for industrial use is their efficiency. It describes how much of the supplied energy is converted into light and emitted as a laser beam. While some lasers here convert only a few percent of the supplied energy into laser light, diode lasers achieve the best known value with up to 50% efficiency (from the socket to the workpiece). This is mainly due to the fact that the conversion of the electric current in a laser diode reaches almost 70%. This advantage is an essential aspect for the triumphal march of the diode laser, which has taken place in industrial production for more than 20 years.

 

International Leading High Power Lasers

The high power lasers from Laserline can achieve a standard laser power of up to 25 kW and an efficiency rate of almost 50%. Meanwhile, in the power class of up to 4 kW, you can purchase converter lasers with a beam quality of up to 4 mm. Additionally, the long-lasting industry lasers are low in maintenance, thanks to an innovative diode cooling technology that has been compactly and portably built, and they are even available as a 19" rack mount laser. Furthermore, customized laser designs have been created, realized, and thoroughly tested in our own application laboratory. Additional components such as processing optics, scanners, beam switches, and monitoring systems round off Laserline’s growing portfolio. Our operators can participate in training sessions and use service / maintenance contracts. In case of malfunctions, a 24/7 service hotline and teleservice with remote diagnosis and remote maintenance are available for the best possible all-round service.

Diode Lasers – Light from Electricity without the Indirect Route

Typical for a high powered laser from Laserline is the direct use of diodes as the most efficient form of beam creation. The basic advantage of high power diode lasers lies in the direct transformation of electricity into light without the indirect route over a pump medium.

Thus, diode lasers are more compact, more efficient, more mobile and easier to handle than all other lasers. Diode lasers will not disappoint because they are almost maintenance-free and have long lifetimes.

 

The diode – the heart of beam generation

In the laser beam source, there are several diode laser stacks arranged, consisting of single diode bars. The number of bars per stack and the total number of stacks are decisive for the output laser power, the diode laser wavelength and the required beam quality. With the help of a simple, patented technology, the beams of the single diodes are overlaid into one common laser beam and coupled into a fiber-optic cable (high power fiber laser). In most cases, the modular design of the laser head (high power laser module and fiber coupled laser module) makes it possible to further equip the systems with more stacks so as to increase the power later.

Almost Maintenance-free High-Power Laser Concepts

Reliability and process efficiency are key requirements for operating material in industrial production. Fail-safe continuous operation in a multiple-shift operation, also in difficult ambient conditions, is thus the quality standard for our products.

The highest possible process stability and system availability in a three-shift operation are the requirements from the automobile industry, which the tunable diode laser fulfills and has been proven in many applications for years now. With an almost maintenance-free operation and a lifetime of a lot more than 30,000 operating hours at its highest efficiency, the direct diode laser is clearly superior to other laser beam sources. For a comparison: with lamp-pumped Nd:YAG lasers, a lamp change is necessary about every 1,000 operation hours, which always entails downtimes and service costs.

Fiber Coupled Laser with Low Space Requirement

Space requirement in production has become an important criterion for planning production lines. Thus, an added plus for LDF diode lasers compared to other lasers of the same performance class is the low space requirement of under 1 m² floor space. The compactness and robustness of the diode laser and high power laser optics even allow for mobile use if and when necessary, making it possible for a completely new service and backup strategies. For maintenance works or in the case of malfunctions, it can be replaced fairly easily and quickly. Therefore, maintenance or repair can take place separately from the production line, and thus without production downtimes. The exchange lasts less than half an hour and no new setup or programming of the laser is necessary. Service calls from customers or Laserline technicians regarding high power diode lasers are therefore significantly more flexible.