Additive manufacturing of fused silica using coaxial laser glass deposition: experiment, simulation, and discussion
SPIE Proceedings Vol. 11677, Laser 3D Manufacturing VIII
Type: Zeitschriftenaufsatz (non-reviewed)
Additive Manufacturing of glass opens up new possibilities for the design and integration of optical components. By varying the shape and size of optical elements, optical systems specifically adapted to various applications can be fabricated cost-effectively. The Laser Glass Deposition (LGD) process uses a CO2 laser with a wavelength of 10.6 μm to locally generate temperatures above 2000 °C in fused silica fibers. This enables the Additive Manufacturing and Rapid Prototyping of glass by melting and then layer-by-layer deposition of fibers. However, these high temperatures can result in very high residual stress in the material. The development of a coaxial LGD process aims for a more uniform heating of the glass fiber during the printing process in order to enable a direction-independent process and to reduce the residual stresses within the printed components. In this work, a novel concept for the coaxial LGD process and its successful experimental application is presented. Further, a numerical simulation model is developed to describe the temperature distribution in the glass fiber during the coaxial LGD process. Based on experimental results and on the numerical simulation, the potentials and challenges of the coaxial LGD process are discussed.