DEME, the Belgian dredging, environmental and marine engineering group, and VITO spin-off Laser Cladding Venture (LCV) have signed a three-year cooperation agreement to strengthen the cutter incisors used to dredge hard soils.
The cooperation follows a successful pilot project on laser cladding in 2015 and confirms the confidence DEME has in the innovative potential of the domestic market.
Dominique Durt, Director Applied Development & Innovation DEME, said: “DEME is heavily focused on innovation. It is thanks to innovative and improved techniques that we can continuously enhance our dredging and related activities.”
Laser cladding is a coating technique in which a laser melts metal powders into objects. The wearresistant and anti-corrosive layers that are applied improve the durability of the mechanical parts.
In a pilot phase, the method was used on dredger incisors and was successfully tested by DEME: even in extreme working conditions the incisors could be used for longer.
Now the initial research will be progressed through economic evaluation via the spin-off Laser Cladding Venture (LCV) which will further develop the technique with DEME during a three year cooperation agreement.