Solar Skies installs first full plate laser welder in U.S.
For more than one year, Solar Skies Mfg., LLC in Alexandria has been working on a new absorber plate to offer to the marketplace in addition to its copper fin-tube absorber plates. Solar Skies added laser welding capabilities by installing the first and only full plate laser welder in the U.S.
While aluminum absorbers with copper tubes are the standard in Europe, they have not been manufactured in the U.S. previously.
Using laser welding technology, Solar Skies is not only able to weld copper absorber plates but can manufacture full sheet aluminum absorber plates.
Laser welding makes it possible to join dissimilar metals such as aluminum and copper in a manner that eliminates concerns of thermal expansion and corrosion. By increasing the thickness of the aluminum plate, Solar Skies is able to get comparable thermal transfer to copper.
An indirect benefit of having a laser welder is that Solar Skies is able to manufacture with a broad spectrum of coatings using advanced application methods such as physical vapor deposition.
Another advantage to the laser welder is that Solar Skies can build virtually any size absorber plate. For larger absorber plates, the thicker aluminum sheet provides a stronger support.
Solar Skies manufactures solar thermal collectors and distributes solar tanks and components for both residential and commercial use.