Laser Evolved ElectroForming : Features & Benefits
The LEEF process eliminates the need for photo tooling. The image is created directly onto the mandrel, removing several potential sources of variance and maintaining far tighter tolerances than can be achieved using conventional photolithography.
This enables features of less than 15 microns to be achieved with superior edge definition and high levels of repeatability, taking the electroforming process into new industries and applications.
For thin, lightweight, durable, complex components with fine features in prototype to production quantities, LEEF should be the first manufacturing route to consider.
High Feature Density
Features and spaces of only a few microns enable high feature and/or component packing density.
Laser Direct Imaging ensures vertical, smooth, burr free side walls but with manipulation of the mandrel image, the forming process and even multi-level forming, a variety of profiles can be achieved including conical and stepped apertures walls.
With multiple exposures, three dimensional components can be created and aspect ratios substantially greater than 1:1 can be achieved, opening up new potential applications and markets for LEEF technology.
Dimensional & Positional Accuracy
Being an additive process, LEEF handles complex forms and topographies without cost penalty. Microscopic feature sizes and tolerances are routinely achieved and maintained, even over large surface areas.
A four fold improvement in pitch accuracy across an 800mm x 600mm sheet can now be achieved thanks to LEEF.
Although the LEEF process may take several hours, because no hard tooling is involved, it can be rightly considered to be a high speed process, helping streamline critical paths and reducing 'time to market'.
Unit volumes in tens or millions can be produced efficiently and economically thanks to large usable surfaces and computer controlled equipment. Material thickness can be modified without changing the tooling and designs can be amended and optimised without significant cost penalty.