2004 - Laser Forming as a Method of Producing Designed Objects

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2004 - Laser Forming as a Method of Producing Designed Objects

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Laser forming can manipulate sheet, tubes and spinnings into sophisticated surfaces for decorative objects. The process offers non-contact forming of a wide range of metals. The laser induces compressive stresses by precise localized heating which, in turn, causes the material to bend. Three mechanisms of laser forming have been established; they are characterized by heating through the materials' thickness and the bending direction. A straight line bend will create a fold and, to this end, the process can be used to replicate scoring without the need for soldering. Laser forming can, however, be used more extensively as there is a relationship between the heating pattern and the resulting form. Processing considerations and heating strategies will illustrate the complexity of both the technique and the parts that can be created. The future development of the process and the potential advantages for design and practical working will be put forward.

Authors: Dr. Sarah Silve & H. Zhao

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