Leister Laser Technology for Revolutionary Helmet Audio

Success Stories4 Mar 2024
In this blog post find out what Leister laser systems have to do with an outstanding 360-degree audio experience when motorcycling, biking, or skiing.

Author: Vivian Renaud, Marketing & Media Technology, Leister Technologies Deutschland GmbH

The German company Headwave is setting new standards in the world of audio technology with its innovative product range. The Headwave TĀG 2 is a high-quality, compact audio system that can be attached to the outside of any closed helmet using a special adhesive technology. The TĀG system uses the helmet as a sound box to create an outstanding 360 audio experience. This innovation enables users to be aware of their surroundings while traveling safely.

Leister laser technology ensures safe, reliable welding seams

Welding the half-shell parts of the TĀG system, in which the electronics are located, to seal them against moisture was not without its challenges. The first attempt to glue the audio system together proved insufficient. Laser welding proved to be a convincing joining technology, with which a stable, media-tight and absolutely reliable weld seam could now be guaranteed.

In addition to the expertise from the Leister laser laboratory, the dynamic implementation of the laser welding application also played a decisive role in the partnership with Headwave. Both companies combine their strengths to make the Headwave TĀG 2 audio system a technologically advanced product. This not only meets the high standards for the consumer sector acoustically, but also in terms of its physical structure.

Waterproofness as a key aspect for durability

The advantages of laser welding should be particularly emphasized in this context. The laser-welded housing of the TĀG system makes it waterproof, dustproof and shock-resistant in accordance with the IP67 standard. The TPU material (black black transparent) and the quasi-simultaneous welding process guarantee a robust and reliable construction.

For Sophie Willborn, Managing Director of Headwave, waterproofness is a crucial aspect. "The speaker is located on the outside of the helmet and is exposed to the weather. Moisture must not be allowed to penetrate under any circumstances, otherwise the electronics would be damaged."

Precise connection through quasi-simultaneous welding

Laser transmission welding is an established technology for joining plastics and plays a key role in the production of the TĀG system. The process requires that one of the components to be joined has a high laser transmittance (transmittance for the laser light), while the other must have a suitable absorption coefficient.

It should also be noted that the absorbing half-shell must remain transparent for the LED light in the application.

Before the welding process begins, both components are brought into the desired position and pressed together from the outside.

In quasi-simultaneous welding, the laser beam is directed quickly and repeatedly over the welding contour, enabling almost simultaneous heating over the entire weld seam. The high feed rate results in a similarly simultaneous melting as with simultaneous welding, which bridges residual gaps and achieves a particularly reliable weld seam.

Avoiding melt expulsion - a particular challenge

A crucial phase of this cooperation consisted of joining the non-welded components of the TĀG 2 audio system provided by Headwave using existing welding tools. In a period of short time, the devices were joined with high-quality results and the welding process was improved even further.

The scanner, an established optical system for quasi-simultaneous welding, was used in combination with a diode laser. The non-welded audio system is placed in the component holder so that the absorbent half-shell is at the bottom. The inwardly curved inner side, which will later be attached to the helmet, is on top. After counter-pressing the pairing under the clamping gland, the laser beam scans the outer edge area - the area of the weld seam - a total of 13 times. After the irradiation time of less than 10 seconds, a holding time of approx. 10 seconds follows, during which the material solidifies and cools down.

Both the high elasticity and the black color of the TPU joining partners posed an additional challenge. The properties of the TPU material, comparable to rubber, required a special procedure for pressing in the clamping device. In addition, it was necessary to ensure that no molten metal was expelled during the welding process.

Welding for test purposes possible at any time

Leister offers its customers the option of welding small series for test purposes in the early phases of projects, such as B. the production of illustrative samples. This service enables customers to evaluate the feasibility and quality of Leister's laser welding technology at an early stage and to drive their projects forward effectively.

Sophie Willborn, the Managing Director of Headwave, gained additional notoriety through her participation in the well-known TV show "Die Höhle der Löwen" (the German version of the American show Shark Tank). This led to increased media attention, including reports in Forbes, the Berliner Morgenpost and other renowned newspapers.

The partnership between Leister and Headwave shows that innovation and technology go hand in hand to create revolutionary products for different industries.