2005 - Laser Bending Silver

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2005 - Laser Bending Silver

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Using a laser to locally heat a metal sample, thus inducing metal stresses which can cause the material to bend, has been an established process for the past 20 years. Laser forming has had potential applications in silversmithing and the creations of designed objects. Defined edges can be fabricated and sharp folds generated when there is a temperature gradient through the material's thickness. But, this is difficult to achieve with silver due to its high thermal diffusivity. This investigation utilizes experimental data, derived with thermocouples employed to determine the presence of a temperature gradient, to obtain the operating window for bending silver. Through these methods, a more accurate selection of parameters for bending silver is possible, which lends credence to the future use of laser forming in the production of silver objects.

Author: Dr. Sarah Silve, H. Zhao

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