Laser cleaning is excellent for cleaning zinc-coated steel products prior to welding. The zinc laser cleaning process is done with high precision, removing any protective coatings, primers or organic coatings, and is suitable in preparing pre-painted or coated surfaces parts. Laser cleaning allows the metal surfaces of zinc layers to remain free of damage during the cleaning process. Moreover since the laser beam can be guided automatically with a very precise position and speed control, laser surface irradiation also enabled the fabrication of textured surfaces with improved wear, wettability and adhesion performance. This method is suitable for thin sheets as well as much larger components.
Laser cleaners are more effective than wet chemical washing processes when preparing zinc-coated steel for welding. When welding zinc-coated steel, three major problems can occur: high spatter amount, poor bead appearance, and high internal porosity. In addition, residuals left after welding can affect the corrosion resistance by interfering with the coating process.
Preparing the surface through laser cleaning produces higher quality welds and brazed seams that are smooth and pore-free. This provides higher stability and quality where there are visible seams. Layers can be removed uniformly and without residue.
Free of abrasion, the laser cleaning process is gentle on the material and the environment.
With their compact design, laser cleaning systems can be easily automated and integrated directly into the process chain. Laser cleaning systems are especially effective in welding preparation in the automotive and shipbuilding industries, as well as precision tool manufacturing, and more.