Enthusiasm high at laser applications conference

More than 350 visitors, including a large number of first-time attendees, have been sharing their interest in laser applications at ICALEO this week.

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Miami, FL - The 32nd convening of ICALEO (the International Congress on Applications of Lasers & Electro-Optics) this week was a success as more than 350 proponents of industrial laser materials processing gathered to learn about and discuss the latest advances in the technology. This year, a large number of first-time attendees showed up, an indication that the future of the technology is in good hands. Congratulations to the Program Committee for giving an opportunity for many of these "new to technology" presenters an opportunity to interface with the world's leading process developers.

Attendance at ICALEO this year was down a bit from past years, for unknown reasons. However, the enthusiasm in the session rooms was still at high level. In addition, the consensus of the five Industrial Laser Solutions Advisory Board Editors and this editor is that the technical level of papers was higher than in the past three years.

A plenary paper by Dr. Xiaoyan Zeng, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, China, drew the most comments as he discussed 15 years of R&D on laser additive manufacturing (LAM). He also showed recent work with laser material deposition (LMD) on large structural components for commercial aircraft being built in China, such as access door frames. Many in the audience, this writer included, had not seen such large parts in previous discussions. The parts shown replace components fabricated from die stamping where the dies take two years to design and make, while LAM is a 44-day process.

Dr. Zeng has agreed to contribute a feature article describing work on LAM processing of large structural aircraft parts for an issue of ILS earlynext year.
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