Laser shock peening expertise
The HELIAM project: ALPhANOV builds on its laser shock peening expertise.
The goal of the HELIAM (High Energy Lasers for Improved Aeronautic Materials) project is to develop and market an innovative process for the laser shock treatment of metallurgical parts.
In order to meet the high expectations of distinguished industries such as aeronautics, automotive, nuclear etc., ALPhANOV has devised and produced, within its own laboratories, a tailor-made robotic cabin to process complex 3-dimensional shapes. The cabin is equipped with the most precise KUKA robot in its range. This robot can move a load of 60 kg at the end of its arm with a speed of up to 2 m/s, while ensuring positioning accuracy of ± 70 µm. This new apparatus opens up possibilities for processing complex custom 3D parts, as well as automating the prestressing of parts in series.
In collaboration with SONATS, an expert in ultrasonic shot-blasting treatment, ALPhANOV compared this conventional process with laser hardening with a 2000 series aluminium alloy, something of particular interest in the aeronautical sector.
The results obtained from this test demonstrated the effectiveness of the laser treatment, with maximum compressive stress peaks in the near-surface and a return to stress at depth, exceeding one millimetre. The fatigue resistance tests also showed the effectiveness of the laser shock treatment, with a fatigue resistance improvement of +165% when compared to that of an untreated part.