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Surface cleaning by laser technology

The application of laser technology for the environmentally-
safe cleaning of industrial objects. The final goal is to
manufacture dedicated workstations able to perform the
developed processes.

The aim of the project is to design and manufacture laser workstations to clean industrial objects and electronic devices in environmentally safe conditions. The research to establish the correct laser cleaning processes will be part of the project itself. A variety of different technologies are currently used to clean these objects and devices: chemical, mechanical or a combination of both: chemical removers, water jet, iced jet, sandblasting, etc. The upcoming European Environment Directive will require the protection of the environment against solvents. Laser cleaning can satisfy this requirement. Moreover, it has other advantages such as, for example, the application of the technology on critical materials and parts as well and on extremely adhesive parts. The present research will compare the technological, environmental and economic effectiveness of different kinds of laser, and the best will be used in the manufacturing of the cleaning workstations. The activity is structured in four main tasks, focused on intermediate objectives as follows: A: Development of laser cleaning processes In this task all types of laser available for this purpose will be tried, setting up the relevant process. The part of the research realting to the study and experimental test of optical systems and special laser heads will be included in this taks, as will the assessment of the environmental impact of the different laser processes. The activity can be further split into the following sub-tasks: A.1 Pulsed lasers A.1.1 Cleaning tests with CO2 superpulsed TEA laser A.1.2 Cleaning tests with Q-switched Nd:YAG laser A.1.3 Cleaning tests with excimer laser A.2 Continuous lasers A.2.1 Cleaning tests with c.w. CO2 laser A.2.2 Cleaning tests with c.w. Nd:YAG laser. At the end of the task a technical, environmental and economic assessment will be performed in order to choose the most effective and productive process. B. Evaluation and configuration of workstations This task involves the analysis of the possible cleaning workstations that will use the selected process and integrate the optical systems, laser heads, sensors (if required) developed. C. Design The detailed design of the workstations will be carried out in this task. D. Prototyping Prototype manufacturing of workstations. Keywords: laser, cleaning, workstations.
Acronym: 
SUCLAT
Project ID: 
1 769
Start date: 
01-02-1998
Project Duration: 
83months
Project costs: 
3 900 000.00€
Technological Area: 
Cleaning Technology
Market Area: 

Raising the productivity and competitiveness of European businesses through technology. Boosting national economies on the international market, and strengthening the basis for sustainable prosperity and employment.