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German Group Researching Laser as Tool for Steel-Strip Surface Improvement

Tuesday, February 3, 2015
Germany-based ThyssenKrupp Steel Europe AG, the Dortmund Project Group of the Fraunhofer Institute for Materials and Beam Technology and LIMO Lissotschenko Mikrooptik GmbH have initiated development work on a new laser technology that the partners will use to improve the properties of steel strip surfaces. The collaboration is part of the OSLO research project, spearheaded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research and scheduled to be completed in 2017.
OSLO will research how the properties of ferrous-steel strip materials can be influenced in a targeted manner by laser surface treatment in a continuous in-line wide-strip process. Materials experts refer to it as functionalizing. To provide steel with better corrosion protection, for example, the laser will uniformly heat the steel's surface layers over the entire strip width. But corrosion protection is not the only benefit of this alloying or surface-melting process. Thanks to uniform heating, it is also energy-efficient and environmentally friendly − the laser only heats the surface, rather than the entire volume of the wide strip.


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