Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited
Keywords: Welding, lasers
Applicants: Automated Welding Systems Inc. (CA), Bob Bishop (CA)Patent number: WO9839136Publication date: 11 September 1998Title: Multiple beam laser welding apparatus
The present invention provides a welding apparatus for use in industrial processing, which is operable to emit an energy beam or ion beam to weld blanks and the like together along a seam line. The energy beam used to weld the blanks preferably consists of a multiple beam of two or more coherent light sources. The apparatus includes a mechanism to selectively reposition the orientation of the multiple beam relative to the seam line. Other objects of the invention are to provide an apparatus:
for butt welding together proximal edge portions of two or more sheet blanks which are separated by a gap of up to 0.25mm or more;
for laser welding together two or more sheet blanks, without requiring the edge portions of the blanks to be pre-finished;
for joining together workpiece blanks to form a composite workpiece which does not require precise alignment and positioning of the blanks prior to joining;
for welding together proximal edge portions of sheet blanks having different relative thicknesses;
for laser butt welding together two or more sheet blanks along a seam line and which automatically senses the spacing between proximal edge portions and compensates either the speed and/or positioning and/or power of the laser energy to form an effective weld seam;
adapted to weld proximal edges along either straight, nonlinear or curved weld seams.
To achieve at least some of these objects the invention includes a welding apparatus configured to emit a multiple or composite energy beam which consists of two, three or more energy beams.