Products Overview

Lasertronics offers both manually operated and robotic systems in a variety of configurations to meet specific application needs.

Manual Systems
Our manual system puts a flexible color-selective laser stripping workhead in the hands of the operator. The workhead weighs about two pounds (one kilogram) and moves easily at the end of its 150 foot (50 meter) umbilical cord.  The workhead comes in two varieties: one with fixed standoff, for use on even surfaces; and one shaped like a pistol, for use on uneven surfaces.

Moving the workhead over the area to be stripped delivers quick ablation of any paint, coating, or corrosion on the surface. The operator can watch the coating disappear, and can hear micro-popping as the superheated coating jumps off the cool surface. This visual and aural feedback helps the operator keep the pistol-shaped workhead at the correct standoff distance.

Laser Ablation System at Pax River

This 400-watt manual Lasertronics system was delivered to the Pax River Presidential Helicopter Base in Virginia. From left: chiller, laser, umbilical cable, workhead.

This photo shows one variant of the Lasertronics operator-controlled system. The tan unit on the left is a chiller that maintains proper operating temperature within the laser. The gray unit on the right houses the laser and our color-selective electronics. The man is holding the workhead, which is connected to the laser via the orange umbilical cable.

This system does not require construction of dedicated buildings, enclosures, cages, or ventilation systems. The system operates on 480 volt, three-phase power, and draws 30 to 35 amps; these specifications are common for industrial electrical systems. The operator must wear protective eyewear designed for work around lasers.  This requirement is similar to the safety requirements for ordinary arc welding.

 

Automated (Robotic) Systems

Lasertronics’ technology lends itself to straightforward robotic system integration.  Here are two examples.

Robotic arm laser ablation system from Lasertronics

Automatic Rotor Blade Stripping System (ARBSS) at Cherry Point with an H-53 blade in place

The Automatic Rotor Blade Stripping System (ARBSS) was installed at the Navy’s Flight Readiness Center – East at Cherry Point, NC, in 2009.  It combines three closed loop color control laser work heads with an industrial robotic system. The lasers operate simultaneously to automatically strip rotor blades. Once the rotor blade is secured in the fixture, the system requires no human intervention or observation.  The system is designed to strip coatings from rotor blades of H-53 and H-60 helicopters used by the US Navy and US Marine Corps.  In 2014, the Navy will upgrade it with faster lasers, and add V-22 rotor blades to its workload.

ARBSS won the 2009 Maintenance Excellence Award from the Office of the Secretary of Defense, and the 2010 Defense Manufacturing Excellence Award from the Aerospace Industries Association.

ARBSS reduces time-to-strip by 90%, from about 24 hours for an H-53 blade (using manual labor and rotary sanders) to about 2 hours per blade with ARBSS.

The Robotic Automated Coatings Removal System (RACRS), currently under development, extends this concept to automatically stripping an entire aircraft. The initial system will be designed to strip the Navy’s V-22 Osprey, but can be extended to other airframes.

Robotic Automated Coatings Removal System from Lasertronics

Artist's conception of the Robotic Automated Coatings Removal System (RACRS) positioned to strip a V-22 Osprey aircraft