Press Releases

Fraunhofer ILT

Environmentally friendly alternative to prohibited hard chrome plating using chromium(VI)

10.8.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer ILT

The strict conditions on the use of hexavalent chromium for corrosion and wear protection coatings, which will take effect in the EU in September 2017, hit the manufacturers of highly stressed metal components particularly hard. One such company is IHC Vremac Cylinders B.V. in the Dutch city of Apeldoorn. The hydraulic cylinders it manufactures, which often measure many meters in length, have to withstand rough maritime conditions for years. With its choice of an award-winning alternative to hard chrome plating, this Dutch manufacturer has become the first company in the world to coat its components using the EHLA technique developed by the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen.

For more information please visit the ILT website
-> Environmentally friendly alternative to prohibited hard chrome plating using chromium(VI)
 

Fraunhofer ILT

ADIR Project: Lasers Recover Valuable Materials

21.7.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer ILT

Taking electronic devices apart that are no longer in use to recover valuable raw materials – this is an essential aspect of the future of urban mining. The Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft is taking a pioneering role internationally in the EU project »ADIR - Next generation urban mining - Automated disassembly, separation and recovery of valuable materials from electronic equipment«. Launched in September 2015, this project is scheduled to run until 2019. It comprises nine project partners from four countries, who are researching how strategically important materials from old cell phones and printed circuit boards can be retrieved and recycled. The Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen is coordinating this project, which is being funded by the EU as part of the Horizon 2020 program.

For more information please visit the ILT website
-> ADIR Project: Lasers Recover Valuable Materials
 

Fraunhofer ILT

European project BONE: eliminating the need for repeat fracture surgeries

6.7.2017

A European transnational consortium led by Maastricht University (UM) will spend the next few years developing innovative bone implants. These implants will offer an alternative to repeat surgeries, prolonged medication use and donor tissue implementation following complex bone fractures. This innovative partnership will also give the participating regions a significant economic boost. The international research project BONE stands for Biofabrication of Orthopaedics in a New Era.

For more information please visit the ILT website
->European project BONE: eliminating the need for repeat fracture surgeries

Fraunhofer IWS

Hyperspectral imaging for 100%-inspection of surfaces and films

4.7.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer IWS

The hyperspectral imaging technology (HIS) perfectly meets the aspiration “to see more than the eye allows”. This novel camera technology enables to image light not only in a spatial but additionally in spectral resolution. To get dedicated sample information, it is now possible to analyze up to thousand spectral bands whereas formerly only three spectral bands (RGB) could be used. Fraunhofer IWS scientists have developed an integrated HSI solution, which implements the po-tential of the HSI technology into reliable hard- and software. The IWS technolo-gy is highly suitable for applications in the fields of surface and film inspection.

For more information please visit the IWS website
->Hyperspectral imaging for 100%-inspection of surfaces and films

Fraunhofer IWS

A new welding head – remoweld®FLEX – for high frequency laser material processing of difficult to weld materials

21.6.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer IWS

Due to digitalized product development and cross-linked manufacturing cycles development periods have been radically shortened. Rapid product change requires from manufacturers and suppliers a high rate of flexibility, so that customized and cost-optimized solutions can be offered. For the development of new laser welding technologies individualized processes tailored for specific materials and products need to be combined with innovative hardware concepts. For the welding of difficult to weld materials a new high frequency beam oscillation welding head with integrated process monitoring – the remoweld®FLEX – has been developed.

For more information please visit the IWS website
->A new welding head – remoweld®FLEX – for high frequency laser material processing of difficult to weld materials

Fraunhofer ILT

Diamond Lenses Make Laser Optics Significantly Lighter

19.6.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer ILT

Diamonds are not only a girl's best friend, but synthetic diamonds are also attractive as a material for laser optics: thanks to their extremely high refractive index and excellent heat conduction, laser optics made with them are ten times lighter than conventional laser optics. Fiber lasers in the kW range could, thus, operate with greater flexibility. Three Fraunhofer institutes have optimized the production and processing of diamonds in recent years, and the first cutting system with diamond lenses is being tested.

For more information please visit the ILT website
->Diamond Lenses Make Laser Optics Significantly Lighter

Fraunhofer IWS

µRevolution – worldwide most compact system for surface structuring by means of scanner-based direct laser interference patterning

16.6.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer IWS

Functionalization of technical surfaces by means of natural, bio-inspired structures is an innovation driver of the 21th century. The functionalities achieved are applicable for e.g. improved bio-compatibility in medical and biotechnological industries, for tribological applications in the automotive industry and for optical applications such as product and brand protection. Fraunhofer IWS has been developing modularly designed solutions for surface functionalization tasks by fabricating micrometer and sub-micrometer structures in a targeted and flexible manner. Scientists of the Fraunhofer IWS will present for the very first time the worldwide most compact system for surface structuring by means of scanner-based direct laser interference patterning at the tradeshow Laser World of Photonics in Munich.

For more information please visit the IWS website
->µRevolution – worldwide most compact system for surface structuring by means of scanner-based direct laser interference patterning 

Fraunhofer ILT

Aachen Center for 3D Printing: Official launch of the world’s largest SLM facility

14.6.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer ILT

For their joint project, the Aachen Center for 3D printing, the Aachen University of Applied Sciences and the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT have ambitious plans. On June 1, 2017, they officially opened the world’s largest SLM facility, located in the new Digital Photonic Production industry building on the RWTH Aachen campus. Concept Laser’s new XLine 2000R selective laser melting system plays a pivotal role in the SLM-XL research project, which is intended to accelerate and optimize the entire manufacturing process for large, metal components. Scientists are working closely with the Digital Photonic Production research campus, which is located in the same building and funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).

For more information please visit the ILT website
-> Aachen Center for 3D Printing: Official launch of the world’s largest SLM facility 

Fraunhofer ILT

Optoelectronic Inline Measurement – Accurate to the Nanometer

13.6.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer ILT

Germany counts high-precision manufacturing processes among its advantages as a location. To retain this technological edge, many companies already have to process metal components to the exact micrometer with zero waste. It’s not just the aerospace and automotive industries that require almost waste-free, high-precision manufacturing in the micrometer range to provide an energy- and resource-efficient way of testing the shape and orientation tolerances of products during the manufacturing process. Since current inline measurement technology not yet provides the required accuracy, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT is collaborating with four renowned industry partners in the INSPIRE project to develop inline sensors with a new accuracy class. Funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), the project is scheduled to run until the end of 2019.

For more information please visit the ILT website
->Optoelectronic Inline Measurement – Accurate to the Nanometer 

Fraunhofer ILT

Corrosion and Wear Protection: Economical, Environmentally Friendly and Extremely Fast

31.5.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer ILT

Components are protected against corrosion and wear through hard chrome plating, thermal spraying, laser material deposition or other deposition welding techniques. However, there are downsides to these processes – for example, as of September 2017, chromium(VI) coatings will require authorization. Researchers from the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen as well as the RWTH Aachen University have now developed an ultra-high-speed laser material deposition process, known by its German acronym EHLA, to eliminate these drawbacks. On May 30, 2017, the research team was awarded the Joseph von Fraunhofer Prize for this work.

For more information please visit the ILT website
-> Corrosion and Wear Protection: Economical, Environmentally Friendly and Extremely Fast 

Fraunhofer IWS

New IWS laser welding technology received certifica-tion by DNV GL - Maritim for welding processes in the shipbuilding industry.

17.5.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer IWS

Confidence and reliability are key criteria for the potential introduction of innovative joining techniques. This is, in particular, also true for the modern maritime industry. Scientists of the Fraunhofer IWS have developed a novel, low heat-input but highly efficient laser welding technology for joining processes of up to 50 mm thick parts made of seawater-resistant aluminum alloys. A decisive advantage of this technology is the comparatively low laser power (< 4 kW) needed during the welding of thick metal sheets. The low laser power enables extraordinarily small weld seam widths and minimal component distortion. The IWS laser multi-pass-narrow-gap welding technology (laser MPNG) has been successfully certificated by the classification society DNV GL and is thus now ready for potential industrial applications.

For more information please visit the IWS website
-> New IWS laser welding technology received certifica-tion by DNV GL - Maritim for welding processes in the shipbuilding industry. 

Fraunhofer IWS

New laser processes for innovative lightweight design

18.4.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer IWS

Lightweight design is one of the mostly progressive research areas involved in accomplishing the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources, as well as the reduction of CO2 emissions. Innovative materials, such as carbon or glass fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP/GFRP), as well as metal foams, contribute to the successful implementation of the target set by the Federal Government. The Fraunhofer IWS has been researching in this field for many years to provide promising and affordable solutions for our industrial and research partners. One of these solutions is the laser-remote cutting technique.

For more information please visit the IWS website
-> New laser processes for innovative lightweight design

Fraunhofer IWS

Laser structuring improves adhesion on metal and protects the environment

27.4.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer IWS

Scientists of the Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and the Fraunhofer IFAM Bremen have developed a novel technology for the large area, efficient and environmentally friendly pre-processing of fiber glass metal laminates (GLARE). This new technology has been jointly developed within the framework of the aeronautical research project » AUTOGLARE- advanced metal fuselage construction- fiber glass reinforced aluminum and automated manufacturing processes for high production rates in the aircraft industry; Sub-project NFM-GLARE «. The adhesively bonded multilayer composites, pre-processed by laser, verifiably provide excellent adhesion and corrosion properties so that chemical pre-processing in anodizing bathes are no longer necessary.

For more information please visit the IWS website
-> Laser structuring improves adhesion on metal and protects the environment

Fraunhofer IWS

Smart laser processing heads in the digital age

18.4.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer IWS

Integrated digitization of processes for laser materials processing provides customers with measurable results in industrial applications. Based on the IWS’ comprehensive systems engineering know-how, cyber-physical laser materials processing systems are being developed by means of new hardware and software solutions. These systems assist the operator in the performance of complex manufacturing tasks, they improve product quality, and they enhance the reproducibility of manufacturing results both for regular and frequently changing production sequences.

For more information please visit the IWS website
-> Smart laser processing heads in the digital age

Fraunhofer Group for Microelectronics

The “Research Fab Microelectronics Germany” gets off the ground

11.4.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer Group for Microelectronics

To reinforce the position of Europe’s semiconductor and electronics industry within global competition, eleven institutes within the Fraunhofer Group for Microelectronics have, together with two institutes within the Leibniz Associa-tion, come up with a concept for a cross-location research factory for microe-lectronics and nanoelectronics. The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is providing support with the necessary investment. On April 6, 2017, Education Minister Professor Johanna Wanka handed over the grant approvals – 280 million euros for Fraunhofer and 70 million euros for Leibniz.

For more information please visit the Fraunhofer website
-> The “Research Fab Microelectronics Germany” gets off the ground

Fraunhofer IWU

New safety technology enables teamwork

27.3.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer IWU

Until now, heavy-duty robots have always been housed in separate work areas to safeguard factory employee safety. Researchers at Fraunhofer want to change that with an ingenious security concept and intelligent robot control. This technology will enable people and robots to collaborate as a team.

For more information please visit the IWU website
-> New safety technology enables teamwork

Fraunhofer ISST & Fraunhofer AISEC

Industrial Data Space empowers new business models

27.5.2017

© Photo Fotolia

Sharing and utilizing data together with business partners – a delicate subject for companies that fear losing control over their own data. This may be about to change, however; with the Industrial Data Space, companies can share data while stipulating who is allowed to use it and for what purpose. At the Hannover Messe, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft is premiering the reference architecture model for this concept, which will form the basis for many new data-centric business models.

For more information please visit the ILT website
-> Industrial Data Space empowers new business models

Fraunhofer IGD

Flowing transition between design and simulation

27.3.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer IGD

The individualized mass production up to the individual item is a promise of the future delivered by Industrie 4.0. It can only be implemented if there are suitable test methods for the feasibility of individual designs. Fraunhofer researchers will present a simulation solution that automatically determines whether the customer‘s desired design can be realized.

For more information please visit the IGD website
-> Flowing transition between design and simulation

Fraunhofer IWS

New energy-efficient technology to produce carbon fibers

20.3.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer IWS

Dresden researchers of the Fraunhofer IWS and the TU Dresden have developed a new energy-efficient process chain for carbon fiber manufacturing. The approach aims at the conversion of polyacrylonitrile (PAN) procurser fibers by means of their stabilization, carbonization and graphitization. Thereby, in future it will be possible to produce carbon fibers at clearly lower costs.

For more information please visit the IWS website
-> New energy-efficient technology to produce carbon fibers

Fraunhofer ICT

Collabolation between Sumitomo Bakelite Co., Ltd. and the Fraunhofer Institute for Chemical Technology ICT

15.3.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer ICT

Sumitomo Bakelite Co., Ltd. and the Fraunhofer Institute for Chemical Technology ICT will collaborate in the development of composite materials for innovative functional and structural engine parts.
At the Hannover trade fair in 2015, the two partners presented a lightweight single-cylinder research engine with a cylinder housing made of fiber composite material produced by Sumitomo Bakelite Co., Ltd.
Over the coming years, the two partners will work together „to make drive trains lighter, better and more compact, and of course to integrate Sumitomo Bakelite Co., Ltd. materials into a variety of new applications,“ Pieter Vanderstraeten, CEO of Vyncolit, the European production company for the composite molding compounds of Sumitomo Bakelite, Co., Ltd. in Belgium explains.

For more information please visit the ICT website

Sumitomo Bakelite Co., Ltd. and the Fraunhofer Institute for Chemical Technology ICT will collaborate in the development of composite materials for innovative functional and structural engine parts

Fraunhofer ILT

It takes two: Structuring metal surfaces efficiently with lasers

15.3.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer ILT

In the automotive industry, more and more surfaces are getting a microstructure treatment. Whether they are added to cylinders or dashboards, functional surfaces are all the rage. Able to offer virtually unlimited precision, lasers are the right tool for the job. To ensure that productivity matches precision, development is under way on a machine that will be able to efficiently process even large surfaces thanks to a combination of two different pulse types.

For more information please visit the ILT website
-> It takes two: Structuring metal surfaces efficiently with lasers

Fraunhofer IWS

Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

7.2.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer IWS

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

For more information please visit the IWS website
-> Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

Fraunhofer IFAM

Fraunhofer Institutes develop non-destructive quality test for hybrid cast components

30.1.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer IFAM

Lightweight design is increasingly applying trend-setting hybrid structures made of fiber composite materials and lightweight metal alloys, combining the advantages of both types of materials in hybrid construction techniques. In the current state of the art, the joints are bonded or riveted. In recent years at Fraunhofer IFAM, a new type of joining technology has been developed for various types of hybrid joints in high pressure die casting. In comparison with conventional joining techniques, the cast parts have advantages in package size, lower weight, and galvanic isolation. In order to use the hybrid cast components safely, three institutes in the Fraunhofer Gesellschaft are working together to research testing concepts to support industrial series production of these hybrid components.

For more information please visit the IFAM website
-> Fraunhofer Institutes develop non-destructive quality test for hybrid cast components

Fraunhofer ILT

Making Light Work: Laser Processes for Hybrid Construction

30.1.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer ILT

At the JEC World Composites Show in Paris in March 2017, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen will be in line with the trend towards hybrid construction: at the joint booth of the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL, Hall 6, Booth C79), ILT researchers will be presenting three laser-based processes for use with plastic-metal composites.

For more information please visit the ILT website
-> Making Light Work: Laser Processes for Hybrid Construction

Fraunhofer IWS

Additively manufactured clamping structures improve adhesion and joining processes

19.1.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer IWS

The turn from traditional “monolythic” components, made of one single material, to hybride constructions made of atypical materials implies great challenges. Modern joining processes must be able to join most diversified materials in a robust and durable manner. The scientists of the IWS Dresden favour clamping structures for transition joints between metal, ceramics or plastic material. The tailored micro structures enable a later application of mechanically highly resistant joints between the parts to be connected.

For more information please visit the IWS website
-> Additively manufactured clamping structures improve adhesion and joining processes

Fraunhofer ILT

Satellite-based Laser Measurement Technology against Climate Change

16.1.2017

© Photo Fraunhofer ILT

In the last few years, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT has been developing satellite-based laser beam sources for climate research. The project »ALISE« (Diode-pumped Alexandrite Laser Instrument for next generation Satellite-based Earth observation) started in August 2016 and will run until July 2018. In cooperation with the Leibniz Institute for Atmospheric Physics (IAP) and Airbus Defence & Space, the Fraunhofer ILT will be investigating the technical feasibility and the possible applications of a novel laser system for satellite-based observation of the world's climate.

For more information please visit the ILT website
-> Satellite-based Laser Measurement Technology against Climate Change