New Laser Techniques Banishes The Pain And Mess Of Bonding Plastics

December 21, 1998

Any manufacturer trying to confidently stick two pieces of polypropylene type materials together is usually faced with using environmentally unfriendly pre-treatments. Some of these pre-treatments are chemical, others heat based, but all waste time and cost money. These can now be dispensed with thanks to a set of novel laser bonding techniques developed by the Warwick Manufacturing Group at the University of Warwick.

Researcher Tony Hoult wished to improve on current techniques for difficult to bond plastics. Industry currently uses processes requiring the application of heat or time wasting and environmentally unfriendly solvents. Many researchers are investigating how lasers could perhaps be used instead to pre-treat and weld plastics but they are using complex expensive lasers. Their laser based plastic welding techniques also require at least one of the plastic components to be transparent to allow the bonding laser light to pass through it to the interface between the two components.

Tony Hoult has devised a very different approach that goes against conventional thinking on the use of lasers to solve plastic bonding problems. To pursue these techniques he has obtained a revolutionary compact, very high powered (1.2 kw) diode laser made by Rofin Sinar Ltd. This is the first of its type in the UK, and is several hundred thousand times more powerful than well known laser pointers. Its laser head is only about the size of a car vacuum. Its small size allows it to be directly mounted on small inexpensive assembly line robots.

By close study of the behaviour of the laser beam combined with research into the joining properties of many plastics he has devised unconventional but extremely effective techniques that can:

• Bond plastics and reinforced engineering plastics without disfiguring pre-treatment

• Allow a range of plastics to behave as if they were transparent and allow the laser light through to the interface between the two components

• Quickly and easily bond a wide range of plastics to rubbers, plastics to foams, and foams to foams
-end-


University of Warwick

Related Laser Light Articles from Brightsurf:

Laser technology: New trick for infrared laser pulses
For a long time, scientists have been looking for simple methods to produce infrared laser pulses.

UCF researchers generate attosecond light from industrial laser
University of Central Florida researchers are making the cutting-edge field of attosecond science more accessible to researchers from all disciplines.

Quantum rings in the hold of laser light
Ultracold atoms trapped in appropriately prepared optical traps can arrange themselves in surprisingly complex, hitherto unobserved structures, according to scientists from the Institute of Nuclear Physics of the Polish Academy of Sciences in Cracow.

Making matter out of light: High-power laser simulations point the way
Engineers at UC San Diego developed a set of simulations involving high-power lasers that could help us recreate the transformation of light into matter, and better understand what happened at the very beginning of the universe.

New metasurface laser produces world's first super-chiral light
Researchers have demonstrated the world's first metasurface laser that produces ''super-chiral light'': light with ultra-high angular momentum.

Researchers combine X-rays and laser light to image sprays
Researchers have developed a new laser-based method that provides an unprecedented view of sprays such as the ones used for liquid fuel combustion in vehicle, ship and plane engines.

Laser diode emits deep UV light
Nagoya University researchers say they have designed a laser diode that emits the shortest-wavelength ultraviolet light to-date, with potential applications in disinfection, dermatology, and DNA analyses.

Weaving quantum processors out of laser light
Researchers open a new avenue to quantum computing with a breakthrough experiment: a large-scale quantum processor made entirely of light.

Shedding light on the reaction mechanism of PUVA light therapy for skin diseases
Together with their Munich-based colleagues, a team of physical chemists from Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf (HHU) has clarified which chemical reactions take place during PUVA therapy.

Laser light detects tumors
A team of researchers from Jena presents a groundbreaking new method for the rapid, gentle and reliable detection of tumors with laser light.

Read More: Laser Light News and Laser Light Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.