Welcome to Harald Dickler - Special Optics for Laser Technology

EHLA – Extreme High-Speed Laser Material Deposition with HIGHNO-Powder Nozzle.
© HD Sonderoptiken für die Lasertechnik



According to the Federal Environment Agency, the largest proportion of fine dust in traffic (approx. 60%) comes from abrasion of brakes, tires and the road. Technical solutions to reduce environmental pollution are still being tested or are not available. Expensive ceramic techniques are used for more wear-resistant tires and brake pads due to the lack of cheap alternatives. But the situation with the brake discs looks much more problematic, because there is no alternative to its manufacturing. There is no economical and above all environmentally friendly replacement. In particular due to the high loads in operation, they are one of the most stressed components on the car. Cast iron with embedded graphite is predominantly used here, but the price-performance ratio has so far justified the use of this material - despite the undisputed disadvantages.

However, this inexpensive material leads to high fine dust emissions during operation and therefore represents an immense environmental burden. The widespread coating processes such as electroplating or thermal spraying proved unsuitable as they cannot effectively protect the brake discs.

  • No metallurgical bonding on cast iron
  • Brittle phases, pores and cracks in the coating or connection zone
  • A considerable amount of material (approx. 50% powder efficiency) and costs involved


The special process control in the EHLA enables the production of low-wear brake discs:

  • Metallurgical bonding on cast iron
  • No flaking off of the layers as with conventional methods
  • Free of pores and cracks in the layer
  • Very low thermal impact and thus reduced distortion of the component
  • Efficient and long-term protection of brake discs

This type of process control enables quick and economical coating of wear and corrosion protection layers for the first time. This leads to a drastic reduction in the environmental impact of fine dust:

  • Less brake dust ⇒ up to 90% reduction in emissions from fine dust
  • Fewer disc changes by increasing the service life ⇒ service life over the entire car life cycle
  • Use of environmentally friendly materials
  • Low consumption of resources (approx. 90% powder efficiency)
  • Saving valuable resources through thin layers
  • Less post-treatment
  • Innovative material combinations possible

Link: Press release "New Fraunhofer coating process provides effective protection for brake discs"


In collaboration with the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT, HD has developed a new powder nozzle that can be used as a Plug-and-Play Solution for Series Production. The new principle provides for a monolithic structure of the powder tip module, consisting of an inner and an outer cone. This module can be preassembled using appropriate shape and position tolerances and replaced without the need for manual adjustment. Both the gap size and the wear resistance of the powder nozzle can be adjusted according to customer requirements. The conversion on site takes place in a very short time (1-2 minutes) without loss of quality.

HIGHNO - Powder Nozzle

HIGHNO - monolithic nozzle tip module



The EHLA process is a patented and award-winning process from the Fraunhofer-Institute for Laser Technology in Aachen. This is a revolutionary approach for the production of corrosion and wear resistant layers. This process is a further development of conventional laser cladding (LC), in which the innovation of the process method is defined by

  • complete melting of the powder through targeted interaction of radiation and powder particles above the melting bath and
  • apply in liquid form to the component surface.

Compared to conventional LC, higher process speeds and consequently higher coating rates are possible. Coatings can now be produced faster and more economically, while maintaining the decisive quality features of conventional LC (including metallurgically bonded layers without pores and cracks). The following pictures show the technological and economic advantages of the EHLA-process, which finally enable the process to be used in a large-scale production.

PDF: EHLA: Extreme High-Speed Laser Material Deposition

PDF: Coating hydraulic cylinders by EHLA © Fraunhofer ILT

PDF: Certified coatings with the EHLA process© Fraunhofer ILT

PDF: Powder Nozzle for EHLA Process© Fraunhofer ILT


The team from the Fraunhofer-Institute for Laser Technology has received several awards for its work in developing an alternative to chrome plating:


Steel Innovation Award 2018


Berthold Leibinger Innovation Award 2018


Joseph-von-Fraunhofer Award 2017


Laser material deposition or also known as cladding is one of the generative manufacturing processes. Here, a filler material in powder form is injected through a powder nozzle into the molten bath generated by the laser beam on the component surface and melted there. By moving the laser beam or the coating optics relative to the component and overlapping individual tracks, a layer is created on the component. The maximum process speeds achieved here are around 15-20 m / min. The main process features are:

  • high-precision, automated application of layers with thicknesses from 0.1 millimeters to several centimeters
  • metallurgical bonding of the layer with the base material (free of pores and cracks)
  • low heat input into the substrate
  • No penetration notches / undercuts
  • High flexibility thanks to a large selection of same and different compositions
  • Machining of almost all metallic alloys possible
  • High reproducibility
  • Little post-treatment due to close-contour layer application

PDF: Laser Technology for Repair and Functionalization© Fraunhofer ILT


Powder Nozzles


Powder Distributor

Adjustment Unit

Beam Shaping System

Cardanic Deflector


  • Feasibility studies / process development
    • Laser cladding (inner and outer contours)
    • EHLA – Extreme High-speed laser cladding
    • Laser cutting
    • Laser welding
    • Laser hardening
    • Laser soldering
  • Advice and recommendation of suitable powder nozzles for the respective application
  • Development / modification of powder nozzles on customer request
  • Training


The company was founded in 2005 and is based at the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen (Germany).

The main focus of the company is the development of special optics and tools for laser technology. In cooperation with the Fraunhofer ILT, powder nozzles for laser cladding in particular are developed and distributed.

Managing Director: Harald Dickler



To contact us please send an E-Mail.

HD Sonderoptiken für die Lasertechnik

Steinbachstr. 15
52074 Aachen

+49 241 8906-438
+49 241 8906-444

Office Hours

Monday - Friday: 9 AM - 5 PM