Laser Zentrum Hannover (LZH) is leading a subproject within the EU project, Lashare, into developing relevant assessment criteria for new laser-based products.
In the future, these criteria will be used to evaluate if and how new laser-based products can attain market maturity.
The scientists of the research institute are also pushing forward three prototypes in the fields of metal cutting, 2µm lasers and a mobile processing unit.
Lashare is a European project involving more than 30 SMEs from across Europe, partners from industry and six laser research institutes. The main objective is to share knowledge on laser based equipment and its use addressing the whole value chain end to end.
Normally, innovative laser-based products take a long time before they are ready for industry. The small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) developing the technologies very often lack the know-how and resources to match the technologies to the demands of industry.
Based upon the assessment criteria being defined in the subproject, SMEs will be able to evaluate their developments more easily and provide potential investors with more security.
Criteria costs, required time and resources for system integration, modularity of the components, interfaces to other systems, and universal applicability will be measured to make the costs and benefits of new technology visible to investors.
LZH will cooperate closely with the five research partners of the project and will collect information from worldwide operating manufacturers. The criteria will be tested using existing pre-commercial products being further developed within the Lashare subprojects.
Within the scope of the EU project, LZH is also developing three technologies: a 2kW diode laser with high beam quality for metal processing, a mobile processing unit for shipbuilding and large steel constructions, and a 2µm laser and beam analysis system for plastics processing.
All these products are fully functional under laboratory conditions and shall now be further developed to prove operation in practice and to transfer them into industry.