Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

High-performance computer for simulating laser processes in nanophotonics

16.12.2010
Computer simulations play an essential role in research and development work. They provide a detailed insight into processes from which answers to specific questions can be derived.

The simulation of laser-based production processes has to cover a wide span of time and length scales, especially in new techniques from micro- and nanophotonics. This requires special algorithms which have already been used successfully at the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT, as well as a massive amount of computer power. Fraunhofer ILT has built a high-performance computer cluster at the »Center for Nanophotonics«.

In laser-based production operations, important process variables are difficult to measure in the micrometer-scale process zones owing to the tiny dimensions and very high temperatures that prevail. Computer simulations are therefore being increasingly used to optimize performance. They provide an insight into the processes and are easier to automate and often more cost-effective than experiments. What’s more, simulations enable fluctuations and measurement uncertainties to be excluded or specifically taken into account.

Multiscales – no problem for the computer cluster

Simulations of laser-based production processes tend to be multi-scale problems, in which a large expansion of the component has to be calculated at a very high resolution. Micro processing requires a resolution of a few nanometers and a calculation area with an expansion of several millimeters. For example, when processing thin-film solar cells, structures must be ablated extremely precisely and evenly from the layers which are just a few 100 nanometers thick.

Nano for macro

But in macro processing too, e.g. steel plate cutting, it is becoming increasingly important to be able to control small-scale effects in order to expand the process limits. To optimize expulsion of the molten metal during laser cutting, for instance, boundary layer phenomena of ultrasonic gas flows in the kerf are analyzed in detail.

High computer power in the »Center for Nanophotonics«

The required large number of grid points exceeds the capacity of conventional workstations in terms of processing time and storage space. The funding provided by the state of North Rhine-Westphalia for the new »Center for Nanophotonics« in Aachen has made it possible to create a high-performance computer cluster for simulations of these multi-scale tasks at Fraunhofer ILT. The final stage of the high-power computer system was installed and started up in November. In developing the concept, the research scientists in Aachen deployed a heterogeneous computer architecture consisting of multi-core processors and special high-performance computers with CUDA architecture, which allows parts of the calculations to be performed on graphics processors (GPUs). This modern concept is particularly suitable for the massively parallel execution of frequently recurring calculation steps. The installed cluster system has 376 CPUs and eight graphics processor systems with altogether 1920 GPUs. The storage capacity amounts to close on 2 terabytes of main memory and 67 terabytes of hard disk storage, of which 20 terabytes are on redundant interconnected drives. Data is exchanged within the cluster by means of a fast InfiniBand network. The theoretical total computer power is close on 10 teraflops, which roughly corresponds to the power of 1,000 modern office PCs. »The system is available to us around the clock on an exclusive basis. This means that simulations can be performed specifically for laser processes, to further our research and on behalf of customers, without any long waiting times. This makes our work much easier while also saving time and money,« explains Dr. Jens Schüttler, project manager at Fraunhofer ILT.

Applications

The new high-performance computer system can be used to simulate complex operations from laser material processing at high resolution in a short processing time. Applications include molecular dynamic simulation of ablation with ultra-short pulses, the configuration of micro processing techniques and the design of gas flows and gas-cutting nozzles. The propagation of laser radiation at wavelength scale and the stability of the melting dynamics in laser cutting can also be simulated. This range of applications is interesting for manufacturers and users of laser processing machines who want to analyze, optimize and improve their processes.


Contacts at Fraunhofer ILT
Our experts will be pleased to assist if you have any questions:
Dr. Jens Schüttler
Modeling and Simulation
Phone +49 241 8906-680
jens.schuettler@ilt.fraunhofer.de
Dipl. Phys. Ulrich Jansen
Modeling and Simulation
Phone +49 241 8906-680
ulrich.jansen@ilt.fraunhofer.de
Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Schulz
Modeling and Simulation
Phone +49 241 8906-204
wolfgang.schulz@ilt.fraunhofer.de
Fraunhofer Institute for Laser technology ILT
Steinbachstrasse 15
52074 Aachen
Tel. +49 241 8906-0
Fax. +49 241 8906-121

Axel Bauer | Fraunhofer ILT
Further information:
http://www.ilt.fraunhofer.de

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht When fluid flows almost as fast as light -- with quantum rotation
22.06.2018 | The Henryk Niewodniczanski Institute of Nuclear Physics Polish Academy of Sciences

nachricht Thermal Radiation from Tiny Particles
22.06.2018 | Universität Greifswald

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Temperature-controlled fiber-optic light source with liquid core

In a recent publication in the renowned journal Optica, scientists of Leibniz-Institute of Photonic Technology (Leibniz IPHT) in Jena showed that they can accurately control the optical properties of liquid-core fiber lasers and therefore their spectral band width by temperature and pressure tuning.

Already last year, the researchers provided experimental proof of a new dynamic of hybrid solitons– temporally and spectrally stationary light waves resulting...

Im Focus: Overdosing on Calcium

Nano crystals impact stem cell fate during bone formation

Scientists from the University of Freiburg and the University of Basel identified a master regulator for bone regeneration. Prasad Shastri, Professor of...

Im Focus: AchemAsia 2019 will take place in Shanghai

Moving into its fourth decade, AchemAsia is setting out for new horizons: The International Expo and Innovation Forum for Sustainable Chemical Production will take place from 21-23 May 2019 in Shanghai, China. With an updated event profile, the eleventh edition focusses on topics that are especially relevant for the Chinese process industry, putting a strong emphasis on sustainability and innovation.

Founded in 1989 as a spin-off of ACHEMA to cater to the needs of China’s then developing industry, AchemAsia has since grown into a platform where the latest...

Im Focus: First real-time test of Li-Fi utilization for the industrial Internet of Things

The BMBF-funded OWICELLS project was successfully completed with a final presentation at the BMW plant in Munich. The presentation demonstrated a Li-Fi communication with a mobile robot, while the robot carried out usual production processes (welding, moving and testing parts) in a 5x5m² production cell. The robust, optical wireless transmission is based on spatial diversity; in other words, data is sent and received simultaneously by several LEDs and several photodiodes. The system can transmit data at more than 100 Mbit/s and five milliseconds latency.

Modern production technologies in the automobile industry must become more flexible in order to fulfil individual customer requirements.

Im Focus: Sharp images with flexible fibers

An international team of scientists has discovered a new way to transfer image information through multimodal fibers with almost no distortion - even if the fiber is bent. The results of the study, to which scientist from the Leibniz-Institute of Photonic Technology Jena (Leibniz IPHT) contributed, were published on 6thJune in the highly-cited journal Physical Review Letters.

Endoscopes allow doctors to see into a patient’s body like through a keyhole. Typically, the images are transmitted via a bundle of several hundreds of optical...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Munich conference on asteroid detection, tracking and defense

13.06.2018 | Event News

2nd International Baltic Earth Conference in Denmark: “The Baltic Sea region in Transition”

08.06.2018 | Event News

ISEKI_Food 2018: Conference with Holistic View of Food Production

05.06.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Graphene assembled film shows higher thermal conductivity than graphite film

22.06.2018 | Materials Sciences

Fast rising bedrock below West Antarctica reveals an extremely fluid Earth mantle

22.06.2018 | Earth Sciences

Zebrafish's near 360 degree UV-vision knocks stripes off Google Street View

22.06.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>