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Analysis of the heat affected zone in CO2 laser cutting of stainless steel

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Author(s): Madić Miloš J. | Radovanović Miroslav R.

Journal: Thermal Science
ISSN 0354-9836

Volume: 16;
Issue: suppl. 2;
Start page: 363;
Date: 2012;
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Keywords: CO2 laser cutting | heat affected zone | modelling | stainless steel | artificial neural network

ABSTRACT
This paper presents an investigation into the effect of the laser cutting parameters on the heat affected zone in CO2 laser cutting of AISI 304 stainless steel. The mathematical model for the heat affected zone was expressed as a function of the laser cutting parameters such as the laser power, cutting speed, assist gas pressure and focus position using the artificial neural network. To obtain experimental database for the artificial neural network training, laser cutting experiment was planned as per Taguchi’s L27 orthogonal array with three levels for each of the cutting parameter. Using the 27 experimental data sets, the artificial neural network was trained with gradient descent with momentum algorithm and the average absolute percentage error was 2.33%. The testing accuracy was then verified with 6 extra experimental data sets and the average predicting error was 6.46%. Statistically assessed as adequate, the artificial neural network model was then used to investigate the effect of the laser cutting parameters on the heat affected zone. To analyze the main and interaction effect of the laser cutting parameters on the heat affected zone, 2-D and 3-D plots were generated. The analysis revealed that the cutting speed had maximum influence on the heat affected zone followed by the laser power, focus position and assist gas pressure. Finally, using the Monte Carlo method the optimal laser cutting parameter values that minimize the heat affected zone were identified.

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