The influence of laser scribing on magnetic domain formation in grain oriented electrical steel visualized by directional neutron dark-field imaging
The performance and degree of efficiency of transformers are directly determined by the bulk magnetic properties of grain oriented electrical steel laminations. The core losses can be improved by post manufacturing methods, so-called domain refinement techniques. All these methods induce mechanical or thermal stress that refines the domain structure. The most commonly used technique is laser scribing due to the no-contact nature and the ease of integration in existing production systems. Here we show how directional neutron dark-field imaging allows visualizing the impact of laser scribing on the bulk and supplementary domain structure. In particular, we investigate the domain formation during magnetization of samples depending on laser treatment parameters such as laser energy and line distances. The directional dark-field imaging findings were quantitatively interpreted in the context with global magnetic hysteresis measurements. Especially we exploit the orientation sensitivity in the dark-field images to distinguish between different domain structures alignment and their relation to the laser scribing process.