This is an area where laser-based manufacturing processes have long led the way. Yet making these developments usable in industry, and opening up new markets, calls for a precise definition of the technical requirements, as well as in-depth knowledge of the market, combined with networking between users, suppliers and research institutes.
Now the LASHARE project, co-funded by the EU, has been launched to give more than 30 SMEs a helping hand, bringing together six of the most renowned European research institutes under the leadership of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT. The ambitious aim of the project is to enhance the competitiveness of the European laser industry by accelerating technology transfer.
Often, new laser-based manufacturing techniques employ specific, standalone solutions that have previously only been demonstrated in a laboratory setting. In many cases these innovations are developed by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), which possess the flexibility required to find a speedy solution to the problem at hand. However there are many possible pitfalls in getting from a lab-demonstrated solution to industrially robust manufacturing equipment. It may be, for instance, that parts of the solution were developed at a time when the final specifications were still unknown or that the components are not sufficiently robust for everyday use. As an SME’s business success relies heavily on a quick market launch, and securing user acceptance for its new technologies and products, LASHARE will help minimize the risks involved in this process and strengthen Europe as a leading manufacturing location, by helping innovative manufacturing technologies get to market more quickly.
Catalysts for technology transfer
On September 25-27, 2013 Fraunhofer ILT hosted the launch event of the EU co-funded LASHARE project, which will run for four years with a budget of almost 15 million euros. Held in Aachen, the event brought together 38 partners from industry and research to determine relevant targets, metrics and procedures for the “LASHARE Assessment Framework”. This framework provides the basis to accelerate the development of demonstrated laser-based equipment and help prepare it for manufacturing. The technologies under assessment are compared with the levels of maturity seen in other established technologies in their sector, helping to accelerate the process toward a demand driven, industrially robust solution.
Rapid market launch for a variety of laser applications
LASHARE helps small and medium-sized partners, in the role of suppliers, to develop the laser-based equipment with a view to improving new manufacturing processes and making sure they respond to current user needs regarding technical implementation. To accomplish this LASHARE has launched fourteen “Laser-based Equipment Assessments” (LEAs) for a diverse array of laser applications ranging from large-scale technologies such as the welding of ship components to nanotechnologies such as the structuring of surfaces using ultrashort pulse lasers.
First, users define the industrial requirements for the laser-based equipment, which they will later evaluate in an industrial-scale manufacturing setting at the end of the LEA. Research partners, working with the users and suppliers, will establish the “LASHARE Assessment Framework” which will define the best technical solution for the requirements provided. Finally, suppliers will use the results from the “LASHARE Assessment Framework”, and implement robust laser-based solutions that meet end-user requirements. In this way, LEAs speed up the t transfer of laboratory solutions to real manufacturing applications that can establish themselves on the market quickly and reliably – the key to market success.
Fourteen LEAs are running from the beginning of the project and will be joined by eight to twelve others during the project through a competitive call. LASHARE focuses on SMEs and enables them to bring new products to market to the benefit of European industry. All in all, more than 30 SME partners will benefit from the support of the FP7-FoF (Factories of the Future) program.
ContactsM.Sc. Dipl.-Ing. (FH) B.Eng. (hon) Ulrich Thombansen
More functionalities: Microstructuring large surfaces with a UV-laser system
05.07.2018 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Lasertechnik ILT
A factory to go
04.07.2018 | Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation IPA
For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.
To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...
For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.
Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...
Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.
A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...
Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.
"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....
Ultra-short, high-intensity X-ray flashes open the door to the foundations of chemical reactions. Free-electron lasers generate these kinds of pulses, but there is a catch: the pulses vary in duration and energy. An international research team has now presented a solution: Using a ring of 16 detectors and a circularly polarized laser beam, they can determine both factors with attosecond accuracy.
Free-electron lasers (FELs) generate extremely short and intense X-ray flashes. Researchers can use these flashes to resolve structures with diameters on the...
13.07.2018 | Event News
12.07.2018 | Event News
03.07.2018 | Event News
16.07.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
16.07.2018 | Life Sciences
16.07.2018 | Earth Sciences