This paper chronicles the development of a vision system for tracking melt pool morphology in the laser metal deposition process. This development is to augment an existing temperature feedback control system. Monitoring both the temperature and shape of the melt pool is necessary because of the effects of local geometry on the cooling rate at the melt pool. Temperature feedback alone cannot accommodate this effect without complex process planning. The vision system's hardware, software, and integration into the laser deposition system's controller is detailed in this paper. Preliminary testing and the effects on depositionquality is also discussed.

Meeting Name

20th Annual International Solid Freeform Fabrication Symposium (2009: Aug. 3-5, Austin, TX)


Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Research Center/Lab(s)

Intelligent Systems Center


This research was supported by the National Science Foundation grants DMI-9871185 and IIP-0637796, and a grant from the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory contract # FA8650-04-C- 5704. The support from Boeing Phantom Works, Product Innovation and Engineering, LLC, Spartan Light Metal Products Inc, MS&T Intelligent Systems Center, and MS&T Manufacturing Engineering Program, is also greatly appreciated.

Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version

Final Version

File Type




Publication Date

05 Aug 2009

Included in

Manufacturing Commons