Sonotec Application Notes
Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) produces a better weld
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Source: Industrial Laser Solutions
Better-quality welds, reduced cost per part, and shorter cycle times are industrial goals that can be achieved by using highly focused laser light. Precise and reliable dynamic sensing technology is required to operate the automated processing laser without direct human manipulation to accomplish safety requirements.

Today, optical coherence tomography (OCT) has gained acceptance as a measurement technique with high precision and reproducibility. OCT as applied to laser welding has already made a step beyond laboratory use, being widely adapted to various laser heads in different branches of the joining industry. OCT brings laser welding to its proper target, ensuring high-quality welds and enabling the reduction of cycle times during welding along sophisticated trajectories or during positioning at challenging joints or low-dimensional e-mobility elements. OCT is beneficial for online omnidirectional seam tracking (FIGURE 1), exact nondestructive measurement of keyhole depth, and identification of faults and defects at the resulting seam. Automotive companies are now increasingly using OCT in their manufacturing processes.

OCT, together with laser welding, is facing extensive new challenges in the e-mobility and aerospace industry, meeting the demands in welding of electric propulsion unit components. Electric vehicles and flying cars are among the greatest technological trends of the next decade, even though the history of e-mobility goes back over 100 years.

Read the full article at Industrial Laser Solutions.