Amplitude improves the riblet machining process with a CANUNDA-PULSE module

Amplitude Laser, France (Chasseur project)

Amplitude Laser

The partner

Established in 2001, Amplitude is a leading global manufacturer of femtosecond lasers for scientific, medical and industrial applications. The company combines research, innovation and close collaboration with its customers to design and manufacture high-quality, reliable and easy-to-use lasers.

The application

Riblets are shark skin-inspired surface grooves that reduce fluid drag by disrupting the flow of turbulent boundary layers. These flow-aligned riblets offer significant performance gains for the aviation and marine industries, among others. However, their optimum design depends on factors such as flow velocity and surface geometry, which require specific research and testing for each application.

The issue

Amplitude, Cailabs, ONERA and AlphaNov are working in partnership on the “Chasseur” project, which aims to identify an effective, precise and reliable industrial solution to manufacture these riblets using Cailabs’ light shaping technology.

The CANUNDA-PULSE solution

CANUNDA-PULSE is a laser beam shaping module based on Cailabs’ patented Multi-Plane Light Conversion (MPLC) technology. The fully-reflective module is designed to withstand high-power femtosecond laser pulses with remarkable stability, and can generate a high-quality square Top-Hat beam for fast and efficient texturing of large surfaces.

We have been studying the potential gains of laser beam shaping for femtosecond processes for many years now. As part of the Chasseur project, we were able to achieve a tenfold increase in machining speed by switching from a round Gaussian beam to a square Top-Hat beam profile. This result has exceeded our expectations, especially since the next step will be to combine beam shaping and beam splitting. We are therefore aiming for an overall improvement factor of 100.

Eric AUDOUARD, Laser Application Expert at Amplitude Laser

Industrial integration of CANUNDA-PULSE

The CANUNDA-PULSE module was used at Amplitude’s premises to machine grooves in AU4G aluminum. The aim was to improve process quality and reduce processing time.