Laser Hard Inc., a partnership between commercial heat treater Peters’ Heat Treating and laser welder Phoenix Laser Solutions, invested in a mobile robot designed for targeted laser hardening and tempering of metal surfaces. The company, which held an open house at its Meadville, Pa., headquarters June 20, says it is the first production system of its kind in the United States.

The open house, which was attended by Industrial Heating, included opening comments from Doug Peters, owner of Peters’ Heat Treating, and Blair Learn, owner of Phoenix Laser Solutions. Live demonstrations of the robotic heat-treating system followed.

The robot combines the latest innovations in laser technology and optical pyrometry and utilizes a six-axis robotic arm that articulates with a two-axis tiltable rotary table. This movement control provides the capability to project the laser beam in free 3D movements precisely following contours of parts with complex geometries.

The laser heat-treating processes include hardening, tempering and annealing. They deliver the same properties as conventional heat treating, but with the added benefits of accuracy and adaptability to workpiece geometry. The digitally controlled laser heat source elevates temperature for heat treating by localizing energy directly to the required work area, resulting in the following benefits:

  • The surrounding area of the workpiece receives minimal to no thermal load
  • Pinpoint accuracy of workpiece surface hardening
  • Process is documented with an onboard temperature control and charting, ensuring process reliability and reproducibility