Laser peen forming is possible thanks to the predictable distributions of plastic strain imparted by the laser peen process. Because these distributions are readily responsive to today’s analytical modeling tools, we can use Finite Element Analysis (FEA) to simulate the imparted plastic strain along with the elastic response of the surrounding material. This allows accurate, scalable predictions that translate into a vast array of unique curvatures and shapes.
Materials processed with laser peen forming include aluminum alloys of varying thicknesses (0.1 inch to 0.5 inch) and heat-treated tempers. LSPT’s modeling capability guides the laser peen forming process to achieve specific part geometries within each variation of material. Validation of the modeling efforts have been completed via physical measurement of post-processed samples, and exhibit physical results that nominally agree with modeling predictions within a 5% accuracy.
LASER PEEN STRAIGHTENING
Another benefit of laser peen forming lies in the selective application of this method to distorted components. The laser peening process can reshape and return non-conforming components to acceptable geometric tolerance bands, without bulk plastic deformation that may otherwise damage the structure. Due to the precision modeling and application capabilities of laser peen forming, it has been used to mitigate distortions in engine crankshafts with eccentric lobes.