The wear characteristics of a glaze generated on the ordinary Portland cement (OPC) surface of concrete using a 2 kW high power diode laser (HPDL) and a 3 kW CO2 laser have been determined. Within both normal and corrosive environmental conditions, the wear rate of the CO2 and HPDL generated glazes were consistently higher than the untreated OPC surface of concrete. Life assessment testing revealed that surface glazing of the OPC with both the CO2 and the HPDL effected an increase in wear life of 1.3-17.7 times over an untreated OPC surface, depending upon the corrosive environment. The reasons for these marked improvements in the wear resistance and wear life of the CO2 and HPDL generated glazes over the untreated OPC surface of concrete can be attributed to the partial (CO2 laser) and full (HPDL) vitrification of the OPC surface after laser treatment which subsequently created a much more dense and consolidated surface with improved microstructure and phase characteristics which is more resistant in corrosive environments. In addition, the wear life and the wear rate of the HPDL glaze was found to be consistently higher than that of the CO2 laser glaze. This is due to the fact that CO2 and HPDLs have very different wavelengths; consequently, differences exist between the CO2 and HPDL beam absorption characteristics of the OPC. Such differences give rise to different cooling rates, solidification speeds, etc. and are, therefore, the cause of the distinct glaze characteristics which furnishing each microstructure with its own unique wear resistance characteristics.
- CO2 laser
- high power diode laser (HPDL)
- life characteristics
- ordinary Portland cement
- surface glazing