Fraunhofer Awarded More than $2.9 Million for Laser Processing and Carbon-Based Materials and Coatings; One Focus on Battery Manufacturing
Fraunhofer USA, the American subsidiary of Germany’s largest research and development organization, recently won four major awards amounting to $2.9 million from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.
The Fraunhofer Center for Laser Technology (CLT) won three of the four awards, one of which is for the application of “Advanced Laser Processing for Mass Production of Alternative Energy Systems.”
Fraunhofer will tailor laser processing technologies to the specific needs in the packaging and assembly of alternative energy sources and storage devices, such as high-capacity batteries and fuel cells.
The specific target is manufacturing of high-capacity batteries such as Lithium-Ion and NiMH batteries. The goal of this two-year program is to develop highly productive laser processing technologies for the manufacturing of high-capacity batteries at low costs.
The second laser award is for developing a novel diode laser at low cost and then transferring the technology to the Michigan-based laser manufacturer Visotek. Fraunhofer will also create new applications for the laser in automotive manufacturing and in the homeland security market.
New types of laser joining of dissimilar materials will be identified in their third project. Of particular importance is the design flexibility that can be achieved in miniaturized optoelectronic and micro-electromechanical (MEMS) and bio-MEMS devices used exclusively in the telecommunication and medical implant/device industries.
Carbon-based materials and coatings was the winning project for Fraunhofer’s Center for Coatings and Laser Applications (CCL). The benefits of carbon-based coatings are their electrical, thermal, optical and mechanical properties. Industrial applications range from the automotive industry to biocompatible implants, fuel cells, cell phones, and micro-electro mechanical systems (MEMS), sensor technologies, optical and electronic applications.