Helium-tight laser beam welding of aluminum with brillant laser beam radiation
The substitution of steel as base metal for casings and packaging applications has increased during the last years. Especially aluminum with advantages in weight and machining effort has become a versatile solution for applications in fine mechanics (e.g. sensor housings) and automotive applications. Joining of aluminum components is more critical due to possible crack formation in the joining seam and uneven seam geometry. With the high intensity of brillant laser beam sources the specific challenges of aluminum welding can be overcome. Due to its hydrogen affinity and high degree of reflection for laser radiation at a wavelength of 1 mm (95%) aluminum needs to be welded with proper shielding gas support and high beam quality in order to avoid seam defects. Cracks and pores can lead to non-sufficient tightness for sensor applications and early failure. Housing components have been joined to form a functioning unit in order to seal electrical or measuring components, which are helium-tight for these applications.