Tech Update



Continuous-Coil-Fed Laser-Blanking Line Debuts in Germany

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Steel or aluminum blanks used to produce stamped automotive parts traditionally are cut using either dies or lasers. The advantage of laser-blanking lines: no need to invest in and maintain, and the blanking operation avoids time-consuming and costly delays during die changes.

Enter new coil-fed laser-blanking technology debuted recently by Schuler at the facility of diode-laser manufacturer ALS GmbH, in Dormagen, Germany. Dubbed DynamicFlow Technology (DFT), the line allows “even small batches to be produced just-in-time at low cost,” says Stephan Mergner, Schuler Automation managing director.” Not only can the line be used to simultaneously produce a wide variety of blank shapes, but blank contours also can be optimized while production is running. “The result: High output rates and tremendous flexibility,” adds Mergner.

DFT laser-blanking lines are energy-efficient and can process a variety of materials, including high-strength steels, with a high degree of repeat accuracy and edge quality, says Mergner. The process also suits the production of surface-sensitive outer panels.

During the presentation at ALS GmbH, customers primarily from the automotive industry witnessed how the line cuts blanks from a continuous aluminum coil. The laser-blanking line employs three laser heads in parallel to cut blanks from material 0.8 to 3.0 mm thick, to 2150-mm wide.



See also: Schuler Incorporated

Related Enterprise Zones: Coil Handling, Presses

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