Laser processing of freeform surfaces: a new approach based on an efficient workpiece partitioning strategy

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A novel method for laser processing freeform surfaces is proposed and demonstrated in this article. The method employs empirical data on the 3D limitations of a given laser process, namely the negative effects of focal offset and angle of incidence on the process performance, to partition a freeform surface into triangular laser processing fields. In this way, processing efficiency can be maximized by minimizing part repositioning while fully utilizing the capabilities of high dynamics galvo scanners. In this proof of concept, the surface of 3D printed Ti-6Al-4V spherical shells was improved by more than 90% and subsequently textured, using the proposed method. Conclusions were made about the advantages of this new approach for processing freeform surfaces consistently and efficiently.


Original languageEnglish
Article number103593
JournalInternational Journal of Machine Tools and Manufacture
Early online date23 Jun 2020
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 23 Jun 2020


  • 3D laser processing, freeform surface, surface partitioning, laser polishing, laser texturing, additive manufacturing