© Jürgen Jeibmann / Fraunhofer IWS Dresden

Material and process innovations –

building on cutting-edge materials and laser technology#

Complex components require the right material in the right place. Consequently, the combination of human and digital expertise with the right process is the best way to realize this. Fraunhofer IWS scientists come into play wherever there is an interaction between the material's process and properties and a close linking of the two worlds becomes necessary. We unite our scientific expertise and practical experience with digital tools and systems to combine material potentials and align the development of necessary processes.

We apply the latest scientific methods and benefit from our long-term experience to answer even complex questions. In researching and developing solutions for the customer's or partner's requirement, we rely on our broad expertise, bundled at Fraunhofer IWS in the interaction of laser and materials technology, systems engineering and materials expertise. Feel free to contact us to find out how we together or on your behalf can find solutions to your challenges.

Reference projects#

High-frequency test laboratory – high-speed fatigue of materials and components

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The Fraunhofer IWS's state-of-the-art high-frequency testing laboratory speeds up the fatigue strength testing of materials and components many times over.
© Jürgen Jeibmann
The Fraunhofer IWS's state-of-the-art high-frequency testing laboratory speeds up the fatigue strength testing of materials and components many times over.

When qualifying new manufacturing processes with resource-efficient material use, the question arises as to the reliability of components – and thus also their fatigue properties. However, studies on component fatigue often involve a considerable financial and time investment. Shorter testing times are required in particular for component validation during development or for the time-critical analysis of pilot series. Our research usually focuses on the prediction of service life or the effects of process variations on fatigue behavior.

Fraunhofer IWS has a laboratory with extensive high frequency fatigue testing equipment. It allows fatigue data to be obtained within a few days instead of a few months. Ultrasonic fatigue equipment and state-of-the-art electromagnetic resonance pulsators are available for this task. They can be used to test highly cyclically loaded structures under conditions that are close to those of actual operation. As a result, defects in castings, joints or additively manufactured components, for example, can be diagnosed and their effects on load-bearing capacity evaluated. With regard to Industry 4.0, we also develop and analyze test-based validation processes for the digital twin. We understand ourselves as bridge builders between product and process simulation and quality assurance.

Processing of fiber-reinforced plastic composites

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Pulsed lasers enable selective matrix removal on fiber-reinforced plastics to reliably create composites using injection molding with plastics.
© Fraunhofer IWS Dresden
Pulsed lasers enable selective matrix removal on fiber-reinforced plastics to reliably create composites using injection molding with plastics.

Modern lightweight construction concepts in sectors such as the automotive industry or aerospace require high-performance materials. In this respect, fiber-reinforced plastic composites are particularly promising. In order to be able to cut, coat or join them with metals despite their high temperature sensitivity and severe tool wear during processing, we are developing new processing methods applying high-precision laser technology. Pulsed lasers can work on a wide variety of fiber and matrix materials. The short pulse duration allows the material to be processed "non-contact" and selectively without noticeable heating. Thermal stress on the entire component can thus be avoided.

In addition, efficient laser processes are employed to prepare fiber-reinforced plastics for further production steps. This includes, for example, surface treatment for subsequent joining, e.g. by means of adhesive bonding – or the deposition of customized protective and functional layers of metal, polymer or ceramics by thermal spraying.

Solutions of Fraunhofer IWS#

Cost-efficient solutions for medium-sized businesses

Industry-compatible one-stop solutions

Easy-to-integrate custom solutions

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Future and Innovation Fields

In our defined future and innovation fields, we promote technological progress for you – our customers, partners and society – in order to meet existing and future requirements.

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