With the recent sale of a Laser Bond Inspection (LBI) system to Northrop Grumman Corporation (NGC), LSP Technologies has achieved another milestone in the commercial integration of LBI technology. Northrop Grumman’s implementation of LSPT’s proprietary LBI system marks another major airframe manufacturer to pursue implementing Laser Bond Inspection in their production process, further supporting Laser Bond Inspection as a reliable method for validating adhesively bonded structures.
LSP Technologies’ Laser Bond Inspection System
As the aviation industry increasingly works to make aircraft lighter, safer, and more fuel-efficient, aeronautical engineers are incorporating more composite elements such as carbon fiber into their vehicle designs. Composite airframe structures have the advantages of being lighter and more resistant to fatigue or corrosion damage than their metal counterparts. Composite panels are joined together using adhesive bonding agents, rather than traditional rivets or fasteners, which necessitates a new inspection process to interrogate the strength and safety of the composite bonds.
Metal Finishing News International published an interview with LSPT Chief Operating Officer Eric Collet in their January 2017 issue. Read the full transcript below, or click here for the original article.
Diode-Pumped Laser Peening Equipment Signals Future of Fatigue Enhancement
Eric Collet, Chief Operating Officer at LSP Technologies since May 2016, has a degree in Industrial and Systems Engineering and a Master’s in Business Administration.
Eric, tell us a little about your background and your work at LSP Technologies?
Eric Collet, Chief Operating Officer at LSP Technologies
I have spent 25 years working in operations, business development, consulting and engineering roles, helping companies in the aerospace and other industries achieve rapid and sustainable growth. I am very excited to join LSPT as COO to spearhead our push toward deeper market saturation of the surface enhancement industry with laser peening. It is a very exciting time in the business as we rapidly scale both our laser peening equipment sales and our in-house laser peening production services, largely driven by the new Procudo® Laser Peening System that we have developed.
Tell us a little about LSP Technologies?
LSPT was established in 1995 in Columbus, Ohio, and is the premiere provider of laser peening services and equipment in the United States. Our team has over 250 years of combined laser peening experience, as well as over 50 patents associated with laser peening. We are an AS9100 registered company that performs laser peening production, application development, contract R&D, and peen forming, as well as manufactures laser peening systems. LSPT is the only laser peening company in the world that is selling, installing, and integrating a fully-licensed, state-of-the-art laser peening system into customer facilities.
What is laser peening?
Laser peening strengthens metal parts by producing compressive residual stresses within the material. The process is generally applied to part locations that are susceptible to fatigue failure, stress corrosion cracking, foreign object damage, or other types of metal failure. The residual stresses created by laser peening provide significant strength enhancement to failure-prone areas, making metal parts more durable and reliable with longer service lifetimes.
Laser Bond Inspection technology provides nondestructive inspection method for evaluating adhesive bond strength in composite structures.
Dublin, Ohio, January 18, 2017 – LSP Technologies announces the sale of a Laser Bond Inspection (LBI) system to Northrop Grumman Corporation. Delivery of the equipment will be in early 2017.
LSP Technologies’ Laser Bond Inspection System
LSP Technologies’ LBI system is a nondestructive inspection (NDI) method for the structural validation of the bond strength of adhesively bonded joints in composites and other materials. LBI uses a high-energy pulsed laser to create a well-controlled stress wave that evaluates the integrity of the bond, as well as providing real-time detection of kissing bonds (intimate contact but no strength). Laser Bond Inspection is the only method for quantitatively assessing the integrity of adhesive bonds in composite structures and detecting kissing bonds. The equipment is the culmination of more than a decade of collaboration and development work by LSP Technologies, the U.S. Air Force, and the major aerospace OEMs.
David Lahrman, VP Business Development, wrote this article on fatigue failure analysis for MFN International, March 2016. You can view it online here.
The analysis of fatigue failure using a scientific method and as an emerging field of study originates in 1842 with the investigation of the catastrophic failure of the Versailles frail accident in Meudon, France. The axle on the leading locomotive broke during a run and the carriages behind the locomotive piled into it and caught fire. More than 55 people were killed. William John Macquorn Rankine, a mechanical engineer, investigated the broken axle to understand the cause of failure. Rankine highlighted the importance of stress concentration factors in components and the impact of repeated cyclic stress on these areas that lead to the component’s failure. Unfortunately, the idea he and others proposed at this time for the progressive growth of cracks due to repeated cycling of the load was ignored by other engineers. William Fairbairn shortly thereafter demonstrated the effect of fatigue on repeated flexure on large beams. Fatigue continued to remain a serious and misunderstood phenomenon for some period of time.
Our website contains several statements about the residual stress generated by laser peening and the superiority it provides over conventional surface treatment methods. But have you ever considered HOW the residual stresses actually benefit an application? This article provides an elementary mechanics example of residual stress enhancement in performance applications by reviewing a relatively simple sample problem.
Imagine you are an engineer working on a new mechanical linkage design for a steering assembly. The mechanical linkage in once section of your design consists of half-inch diameter hardened steel rods subjected to bending loads. Once particular location in the design is subject to slightly higher bending stresses than the remainder of the structure. This stress application is observed during every cycle of adjusting the steering. In analyzing the linkage section, it was determined the maximum bending moment observed is 1200 pounds per inch.
This problem can be visualized by taking a pencil in your hands and trying to snap it in half. A schematic of this would appear as:
The red arrows in the image indicate the area that is placed into tension by the bending forces. The material at the top of the rod is being pulled apart (tension) and the material at the bottom of the rod is being squeezed together (compression).
To understand what is going on inside of the rod, picture a slice through the center of the rod and evaluate how the stresses are distributed through the area (cross section). The image below shows a representative stress distribution with tensile stresses indicated in red and compressive stresses in blue. The magnitude of both is highest at the top and bottom of the cross section and fade to 0 at the center (neutral axis).
LSP Technologies’ Procudo® Laser Peening System sets a new level of capability by providing state-of-the-art developments in laser technology with increased performance and reliability.
Dublin, Ohio, January 11, 2016 – LSP Technologies, Inc. (LSPT) announces their revolutionary Procudo® Laser Peening System is now available as a comprehensive package that includes fully-integrated laser delivery, diagnostics, and robotic-part-handling modules. The company recently formed an exclusive manufacturing partnership to facilitate the fabrication and delivery of modular laser peening systems designed for rapid integration into customer facilities. LSP Technologies, located in Dublin, OH, is the only company in the world selling, installing, and integrating state-of-the-art laser peening systems into manufacturing facilities.
January 26, 2017, 1-2 PM EST
Presenter: David F. Lahrman, Vice President of Business Development, LSP Technologies, Inc.
Join us on Thursday, January 26th at 1 PM (EST) as David Lahrman presents an informative webinar on laser peening for cracking and fatigue prevention.
- Get an introduction to the laser peening process, and learn how laser peening prevents cracking and fatigue in critical parts.
- Learn about a study demonstrating the fatigue enhancement benefits of laser peening on aircraft engine components.
- Have an opportunity to ask questions about laser peening and LSP Technologies’ laser equipment and services.
Sign up via the form on our Webinars page, or email Eric Hoffman for more information.
Hope to see you there!