Wear Re­sis­tance

The Australian Mining Review - - CONTENTS -

LASERBOND has suc­cess­fully de­signed, de­vel­oped, man­u­fac­tured and shipped its first cus­tomised turnkey laser cladding sys­tem.

LaserBond will ex­port the sys­tem to it part­ner in main­land China; the first of many laser cladding in­no­va­tions the com­pany ex­pects to ship in the com­ing years.

The ex­port pack­age to China was for an ad­di­tive man­u­fac­tur­ing laser cladding cell, tai­lored for ini­tial sur­face engi­neer­ing en­hance­ment and re­man­u­fac­tur­ing of min­eral pro­cess­ing crusher rollers, up to 2m di­am­e­ter x 5.5m long with a mass of 10 tonnes.

All com­po­nents ex­cept the 6-axis ro­bot, 4kW laser diode power unit and the con­trol hard­ware are de­signed, man­u­fac­tured and in­te­grated in LaserBond’s Smeaton Grange work­shops.

LaserBond’s tech­nol­ogy di­vi­sion was es­tab­lished in re­sponse to a num­ber of in­ter­na­tional en­quiries to li­cense its laser cladding in­no­va­tion.

Of­fer­ing tai­lored sys­tems in cus­tom hard­ware, soft­ware, and sup­port pack­ages, it cap­i­talises on the com­pany’s unique knowhow around the ap­pli­ca­tion of very high-pow­ered lasers to ap­ply spe­cialised sur­faces to heavy ma­chine parts; typ­i­cal of the re­sources sec­tor.

LaserBond ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor Wayne Hooper, who leads the tech­nol­ogy di­vi­sion, said LaserBond’s niche is at the ‘ heavy end’.

“Many sur­face engi­neered prod­ucts re­quire ex­tended run­ning times at high power lev­els, some projects run­ning 16 hours at max­i­mum power,” Mr Hooper said.

“This comes with chal­lenges that our team has met.”

Many of LaserBond’s parts and tech­nolo­gies were also de­vel­oped in-house for heavy in­dus­try and pro­tected with patents (and ap­pli­ca­tions), and its units were de­signed to han­dle high load­ing and high tem­per­a­ture (pre­heated) com­po­nents.

Mr Hooper said one pro­pri­etary de­vel­op­ment was its pow­der in­jec­tion noz­zle sys­tem.

“We de­vel­oped our own wa­ter-cooled, off-axis pow­der in­jec­tion noz­zle,” he said.

“This in­cor­po­rates a rapidly re­place­able pow­der in­jec­tion tube and gas de­pres­surised grav­ity-fed pow­der mixer to en­able us to man­age the in­tense heat ac­cu­mu­lat­ing in the laser head.

“Flow­ing on from that and the ge­om­e­try of the part be­ing pro­cessed led us to in­vest in our own con­trol sys­tem de­vel­op­ment. “We have a world class prod­uct.” An­other el­e­ment is work piece ma­nip­u­la­tors for heavy com­po­nents up to 20 tonne.

As aware­ness of the ap­pli­ca­tion ben­e­fits of laser ad­di­tive man­u­fac­tur­ing and ad­vanced me­tal­lurgy to heavy end of in­dus­try grows, LaserBond has re­ceived new li­cenc­ing en­quiries for other turnkey LaserBond cladding sys­tem pack­ages.

Across its two fa­cil­i­ties, the com­pany is work­ing in ad­di­tional R&D col­lab­o­ra­tions to de­velop a cen­tre of ex­cel­lence for sur­face engi­neered com­po­nents for re­source, in­fra­struc­ture, de­fence and agri­cul­tural in­dus­tries.

Pre De­liv­ery Com­mis­sion­ing test­ing the op­er­a­tion of 6-ax­is­robot and 2-axis work piece ma­nip­u­la­tor.

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