This technology field - Lasers and Optics - focuses on developing innovative laser beam sources and high quality optical components and systems. Fraunhofer's team of experienced laser engineers builds beam sources which have tailor-made spatial, temporal and spectral characteristics and ranging from μW to GW. These sources span a wide range of types: from diode lasers to solid-state lasers, from high power cw lasers to ultrashort pulse lasers and from single frequency systems to broadband tunable lasers.
In the field of solid-state lasers, oscillators as well as amplification systems with excellent power data hold the center of our attention. Whether our customers are laser manufacturers or users, they do not only receive tailor-made prototypes for their individual needs, but also expert consultation to optimize existing systems. In the realm of short pulsed lasers and broad band amplifiers in particular, numerous patents and record-setting values can be provided as references.
Furthermore, this technology field has a great deal of expertise in beam shaping and guiding, packaging of optical high power components and designing optical components. This field also specializes in dimensioning highly efficient free form optics. In general, the lasers and optics developed here can be applied in areas ranging from laser material processing and measurement engineering to illumination applications and medical technology, all the way to use in aerospace applications, quantum technology and pure research.
Among the many manufacturing processes in the technology field Laser Materials Processing, cutting and joining in micro and macro technology as well as surface processes count among its most important. Whether it be laser cutting or laser welding, drilling or soldering, laser metal deposition or cleaning, structuring or polishing, generating or layering, the range of services spans process development and feasibility studies, simulation and modeling, as well as the integration of processes in production lines.
The strength of the technology field lies in its extensive know-how, which is tailored to customer requirements. In such a way hybrid and combination processes also result. Moreover, complete system solutions are offered in cooperation with a specialized network of partners. Special plants, plant modifications and additional components are the constituent part of numerous R&D projects. For example, special processing heads for laser materials processing are being developed and produced, based on a customer's specific needs. In addition, process optimization by changing the design of components as well as systems to monitor quality on-line count among the specializations of this technology field.
Customers receive laser-specific solutions that incorporate the working material, product design, construction, means of production and quality control. This technology field appeals to laser users from various branches: from machining and tool construction to photovoltaics and precision engineering all the way to aircraft and automobile construction.
The focus of the technology field Laser Measurement Technology and EUV Technology lies in manufacturing measurement technology, materials analysis, identification and analysis technology in the areas of recycling and raw materials, measurement and test engineering for environment and security, as well as the use of EUV technology. In the area of manufacturing measurement technology, processes and systems are being developed for inline measurement of physical and chemical parameters in a process line. Quickly and precisely, distances, thicknesses, profiles or chemical composition of raw materials, semi-finished goods or products can be measured.
In the field of material analytics, the institute has acquired profound know-how in spectroscopic measurement processes. Applications are automatic quality control and positive material identification, monitoring of process parameters or online analysis of exhaust gases, dust and wastewater. The more precise the chemical characterization of recycling products, the higher their recycling value. Laser emission spectroscopy has proven itself as an especially reliable measurement tool. In addition to the development of processes, complete prototype plants and mobile systems for industrial use are produced.
In EUV technology, Fraunhofer's experts develop beam sources for lithography, microscopy, nanostructuring or x-ray microscopy. Optical systems for applications in EUV engineering are calculated, constructed and manufactured as well.
Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT Partner for Innovations We light up new paths: Whether car manufacturing, photovoltaics, aircraft industry or medical engineering, the most diverse branches of industry are profiting from the brilliant power of the laser.
As a tool, light is indisputably an innovation driver. Germany occupies a top position worldwide in the field of optical technology and is holding its own as the world leader in laser manufacturing technology. And, thanks to the intensive research it carries out at the cutting edge between science and practice, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT has been making its own contribution to this success - for more than 30 years.
Opening Up New Perspectives With more than 540 employees and more than 19,500 m² net floor space the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT is worldwide one of the most important development and contract research institutes of its specific field. The activities cover a wide range of areas such as the development of new laser beam sources and components, precise laser based metrology, testing technology and industrial laser processes. This includes laser cutting, caving, drilling, welding and soldering as well as surface treatment, micro processing and additive manufacturing.
Furthermore, the Fraunhofer ILT is engaged in laser plant technology, process control, modelling and simulation as well as in the entire system technology. We offer feasibility studies, process qualification and laser integration in customer specific manufacturing lines.
The Fraunhofer ILT is part of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, with 72 institutes, more than 26,600 employees and an annual research budget of 2.6 billion euros.