15 Jun 2017
Show highlights from Laser Zentrum Hannover, Jenoptik, Scanlab, and the Ferdinand-Braun-Institut.
With less than two weeks to go until Messe München opens its doors for the latest instalment of the LASER World of Photonics event, here’s our round-up of the latest product announcements and development news from trade show exhibitors:
Ultrafast lasers are again expected to be a highlight of the Munich exhibition, and Germany’s Jenoptik is launching its new generation of “e²” pulse compression gratings (PCGs), now said to offer near-perfect diffraction efficiency.
“With the Jenoptik e² pulse compression grating, an efficiency of 95 percent can be achieved in a comparable structure for various grating periods and wavelengths,” claims the Jena firm.
“In addition to the high diffraction efficiency, the encapsulation of the grating nanostructures also permits easier handling. This encapsulation also protects against external contamination and damage, making it ideal for industrial applications.”
The PCGs, which stretch and compress laser pulses, are available in custom designs and dimensions – with a line density of 1480 to 3000 lines per millimeter – and cover applications from the infrared to the ultraviolet spectrum.
Jenoptik adds that its femtosecond lasers, in combination with its own “VOTAN A” perforation machine tool, can now be used to process leather material – for example to help make airbags in the instrument panels of luxury vehicles.
Jenoptik is at Hall A3, booth 336
Meanwhile representatives from the Ferdinand-Braun-Institut (FBH) in Berlin will be showcasing advances in both laser diodes and LEDs, as well as what it calls a “flexible all-in-one light source” said to deliver high-precision pulses in the pico- and nanosecond range with nanojoule energies.
“The laser system offers freely selectable repetition rates from the hertz to the megahertz range and peak pulse powers of up to 50 W,” says FBH, pointing out that the system uses tailored diodes and RF driver components that are both sourced internally.
FBH adds that while the standard format of the laser is based around 1030 nm emitters, the output wavelength can be easily customized for a wide variety of applications including lidar, materials processing and medicine.
Engineers from FBH will also highlight progress in diode development that has produced laser bars with an output exceeding 1 kW. The bars, featuring a 6 mm long resonator and a 10 mm aperture, operate with a conversion efficiency of 63 per cent – and FBH will also showcase a 6 kW pump laser module with an electro-optic efficiency of 50 per cent.
FBH is at hall B2, booth 350
Another German company, Scanlab, will be offering a first view of what it claims to be a “quantum leap” for 3D laser processing. The Puccheim firm’s new “excelliSHIFT z-scanner” is said to fully eliminate the need for transmissive optics within a scanner system.
“These advantages accrue, for example, when designing complex machines for tool and mold-making,” Scanlab reports. “One potential application is functionalization of three-dimensional surfaces for vehicle construction.”
Initially designed to work with 1030-1070 nm laser wavelengths, the company says that a variant for green wavelengths (515-532 nm) will soon become available.
Scanlab is at Hall A2, booth 215
Laser Zentrum Hannover (LZH) says that it will present a compact new laser head said to be suitable for lidar, laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) and materials processing applications.
The multifunctional system, based around a Q-switched source, offers 1030 nm and 515 nm outputs, emitting high pulse energies at rapid repetition rates.
As well as solutions for selective laser melting based on two-photon polymerization and the application of optical coherence tomography in laser transmission welding, LZH will also highlight processes for cutting and analyzing material on the seabed.
“In the field of lightweight construction, [LZH] presents adapters made of steel-aluminum for the lightweight shipbuilding of tomorrow,” it announced. “Further exhibits cover an automated glass welding process with filler material as well as a laser-encoded shaft for torque measurement.”
LZH is at hall A3, booth 506