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18 June 2007 Online monitoring of the laser brazing of titanium overlap joints
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Image processing and thermography for its own are very versatile and established measurement techniques for many years. However, the combination of these two measurement technologies opens a new field of applications. The online monitoring of the laser-brazing of titanium overlap joints is such a new application. The laser brazing process for overlap joining of formed titanium sheets for the production of heat exchangers is presently being investigated at the Fraunhofer IPT. In comparison to conventional furnace brazing the laser brazing technology decreases substantially the heat impact and thus reduces the thermal material damage in the parts due to local selective heating in a laser beam focal spot. Even though the process is stable, errors in the brazing seam such as pores or unacceptable material oxidation can occur. To ensure a high quality an online process monitoring or even process control is necessary. But since the surface remains unchanged during this brazing process no geometrical inspection of the surface can be conducted. Therefore today's quality assurance performs x-ray or destructive testing. This paper demonstrates how the use of thermography in combination with image processing allows a machine integrated online monitoring of the laser brazing process. First the basic principals are presented which cover the fields of heat coupling, heat transmission and heat distribution as well as the temperature emission of light and the spectral properties of the laser beam shaping optic and so lead to the optical set-up. Then analysis algorithms are derived which characterize the process, detect process failures and make a seam tracking possible.
© (2007) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
R. Schmitt, K. Vielhaber, D. Donst, and F. Klocke "Online monitoring of the laser brazing of titanium overlap joints", Proc. SPIE 6616, Optical Measurement Systems for Industrial Inspection V, 661639 (18 June 2007);


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