German automation specialist Contexo has employed Rofin-Baasel diode lasers for its high volume production of medical and pharmaceutical assemblies.
Of the commonly used joining processes, which include ultrasonics, crimping and glueing, welding using a diode laser met all of Contexo’s pre-requisites such as speed, precision, flexibility and traceability. Contexo needed precision welding around fine contours with a total weld length of 1.5m on a surface area of just 10cm x 12cm.
Rofin-Baasel said: 'An increasing demand for laser based plastics welding technology within the medical device manufacturing industry is anticipated. The main reasons for this will be the increasingly sophisticated welding requirements on the components that need to be joined, coupled with more complex welding contours.’
Another consideration for high speed, high volume joining applications is the preference to eliminate the need for additional materials such as glue or fasteners, which could add considerable cost to the finished product. Using lasers eliminates the need for these joining materials.
According to Rofin-Baasel the ability of the laser to provide a precise, predictable, fast and controllable joining process, especially on compact and complex parts, is why laser welding technology is now being considered by a growing number of product manufacturers at the design phase of new projects.