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Sintering and Lasers: Applications, Innovation and Research (FLAIR)

This platform is the result of the merger of two existing platforms, the Lasers platform in Le Creusot and the Sintering platform in Dijon which implement processes involving an intense heat source (laser and electric current) including physical phenomena involved are very close. This platform will allow, by pooling skills and tools (experimental, simulations) to respond with innovation to research, R&D and transfer work in the metallurgy field including powder metallurgy, applications of power lasers and materials science. The main business sectors are nuclear (PNB), defense (DGA), aeronautics, transport.

Frédéric BERNARD


Phone : +33 (0)3 80 39 61 25

Sinter Tray / Dijon


We have two flash sintering machines or SPS (Spark Plasma Sintering). This relevant process allows the densification of all types of pulverulent materials (metals, ceramics, composites, …). Our machines allow the sample to be subjected to a high intensity electric current (typically 0-10V, 1-30 kA) while applying a pressure of several tens of MPa and, this, in a temperature range varying from ambient up to 2400 ° C.

  • HPD-125 (Fabricant : FCT Système GMbH) ø = 30mm – 160mm, h = 60 – 80mm, 2400°C, 1250kN, 600°C/min, vide, atmosphère neutre (argon, azote), atmosphère réductrice (hydrogène)
  • HPD-10 (Fabricant : FCT Système GmbH, Modèle : HPD 10) ø = 8mm-40mm, h=30-50mm, 2400°C, 100kN, 400°C/min, vide, atmosphère neutre (argon, azote)

Contact : S. Le Gallet, F. Bernard

Flash sintering presses are intended for the shaping of powders and / or for the assembly of all types of materials. The objectives are industrial applications and / or studies to understand consolidation phenomena and / or at interfaces.

The technology makes it possible to subject the sample to pulses of electric current while applying a uniaxial load and this in a temperature range varying from ambient to 2400 ° C. The samples treated can have, for the smallest machines, a diameter varying from 5 to 50 mm and, can reach 400 mm for industrial equipment. The experiments are generally carried out under vacuum but it is however possible to work under a controlled atmosphere (argon, nitrogen, hydrogen)

The flash sintering platform has two installations, brand FCT system, flash sintering, one of small dimension called research, and another of larger dimension called development.

The functions common to our equipment are as follows:

  • Servo-hydraulic force regulation
  • Stroke and compression speed measurement
  • Vacuum enclosure in double walled special steel, water cooled
  • Measurement and regulation of the temperature as desired by pyrometers placed in the axial and / or radial direction, and / or by mobile thermocouples
  • Freely programmable sintering parameters with up to 45 segments per recipe
  • Pulse on / off variably programmable (1 … 255 ms) separately for each segment
  • Comprehensive software for data logging and analysis of all sintering parameters
  • Compression force: 20 … 1250 kN
  • Piston stroke: 0 … 150 mm
  • Piston displacement speed: 0 … 2 mm / s
  • Max diameter of samples Ø: 150 mm
  • Max mold dimensions: Ø 350 x 400 mm
  • Max temperature: 2400 ° C
  • Maximum temperature ramp: 5 … 1000 ° C / min (depending on size of tool and target temperature)
  • Vacuum in the enclosure: 5 x 10-2 mbar
  • Pressure: 0-1100 mbar
  • Cooling system water flow (4 bar): 8 m3 / h
  • Max voltage: 8 V
  • Max intensity: 24000 A
  • Max power: 37 kW
  • Pulse duration ON: 1 … 255 ms
  • Pulse OFF time: 0 … 255 ms
  • Number of pulses: 1 … 255
  • Extra Pause: 0 … 255 ms
  • Equipment dimensions (w / d / h): 5000 x 2000 x 3200 mm
  • Weight: approx. 5000 kg
  • Electrical specification: 3 x 400 V, 50 Hz, 300 kVA
  • Working atmosphere: Ar and N2 or pure H2 (specific to the equipment)
  • Regulation: Axial, radial pyrometer, K thermocouple or S thermocouple with the possibility of having 10 measurement points simultaneously (specific to our equipment)
  • Compression force: 20 … 100 kN
  • Piston stroke: 0 … 100 mm
  • Piston displacement speed: 0 … 2 mm / s
  • Max diameter of samples Ø: 40 mm
  • Max dimensions of the molds: Ø 120 x 100 mm
  • Max temperature: 2400 ° C
  • Maximum temperature ramp: 5 … 400 ° C / min
  • Vacuum in the enclosure: 5 x 10-1 mbar
  • Pressure: 20-60 mbar
  • Cooling system water flow (4 bar): 2.5 m3 / h
  • Max voltage: 7.2 V
  • Max current: 5500 A
  • Max power: 37 kW
  • Pulse duration ON: 1 … 255 ms
  • Pulse OFF time: 0 … 255 ms
  • Number of pulses: 1 … 255
  • Extra Pause: 0 … 255 ms
  • Equipment dimensions (w / d / h): 1000 x 800 x 2200 mm
  • Weight: approx. 1000 kg
  • Electrical specification: 3 x 400 V, 50 Hz, 45 kVA
  • Working atmosphere: Ar and N2
  • Regulation: Axial pyrometer or thermocouple K


We also have a hot isostatic compression machine (CIC) which makes it possible to obtain massive materials of complex shapes from metallic or ceramic powders by applying a high pressure of argon. This device also makes it possible to assemble massive parts of different nature by diffusion welding. Pressure and temperature ramps can be independently selected

HIPress: QIH 15L (Avure), enclosure dimensions: ø = 186 mm, h = 500 mm, temperature rise up to 2000 ° C (rise speed up to 50 ° C / min), pressure up '' at 2000 bars.

Contact : J-P. Chateau-Cornu, F. Bernard

Planetary mill

Mechanical synthesis is the operation which allows the synthesis of an alloy within a grinder through a succession of fracture and weld operations. Unfortunately, this mechanical grinding requires high grinding times leading to contamination of the powder by the grinding tools. However, it is possible to perform mechanical activation via the use of short-term high-energy grindings (P4, Fritsch), it makes it possible to produce nanostructured aggregates or agglomerates. Thus, to obtain the desired alloy, it will be necessary to apply a heat treatment to the mixture of mechanically activated powders. This mechanical activation will reduce the annealing and sintering temperatures due to the decrease in grain size but also the accumulation of defects.

  • Planetary Mill P4 (Fritsch), Jars from 12 mL to 500 mL, Rotation speed from 0 rpm to 400 rpm

Contact : F. Bernard

Lasers and assemblies technical platform / Le Creusot

The ICB laser hall located in Le Creusot implements laser processes (welding, cutting, marking), as well as more conventional arc welding processes.

The know-how acquired over 25 years has made it possible to develop a multidisciplinary (thermal, hydrodynamic, mechanical, metallurgical, physico-chemical) and multi-scale approach, making it possible to grasp the phenomena which occur during the interaction of the energy beam with matter, and the effects induced by this interaction.

The activity combines experimental aspects:

  • Process optimization (experiment plans)
  • Instrumentation of the process (rapid imaging, thermometry, thermography, DIC
  • Image correlation, physico-chemical and mechanical characterizations)

With multi-physical numerical simulations:

  • Thermo-hydraulic: modeling of laser welding in keyhole mode (capillary formation, etc.) / modeling of electromagnetic couplings in arc welding
  • Thermomechanics: modeling of stress formation in assemblies
    in order to understand the phenomena and to control their consequences, to answer scientific questions but also industrial problems.

The platform has several laser sources including:

TRUMPF TRUDISK 6001: continuous Yb-YAG laser (1030 nm) with a maximum power of 6 kW (fiber of 100 µm minimum), used in welding
TRUMPF HL304P: pulsed Nd-YAG laser (1064 nm) with a maximum average power of 330 W (9 kW peak), particularly used for cutting
ROFIN SLM40D: pulsed Nd-YAG laser (1064 nm) with a maximum average power of 40 W (61 kW peak), used for marking
as well as conventional welding processes: including TIG, MIG and CMT (Cold Metal Transfer).

At the numerical computation level, it mainly relies on COMSOL, ABAQUS and ANSYS commercial software.

The articulation with the socio-economic world is done via SATT SAYENS.


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