Finite-element modelling of thermo-mechanical stress distribution in laser beam ceramic tile grout sealing process

A. Liaqat, S. Safdar, M. A. Sheikh

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Laser tile grout sealing is a special process in which voids between the adjoining ceramic tiles are sealed by a laser beam. This process has been developed by Lawrence and Li using a customized grout material and a high power diode laser (HPDL). The process has been optimally carried out at laser powers of 60-120 W and at scanning speeds of 3-15 mm/s. Modelling of the laser tile grout sealing process is a complex task as it involves a moving laser beam and five different materials: glazed enamel, grout material, ceramic tile, epoxy bedding, and ordinary Portland cement substrate. This article presents the finite element model (FEM) of the laser tile grout sealing process. The main aim of this model is to accurately predict the thermo-mechanical stress distribution induced by the HPDL beam in the process. For an accurate representation of the process, the laser was modelled as a moving heat source. A three-dimensional transient thermal analysis was carried out to determine the temperature distribution. Temperature-dependent material properties and latent heat effects, due to melting and solidification of the glazed enamel, were taken into account in the FEM, thereby allowing a more realistic and accurate thermal analysis. The results of the thermal analysis were used as an input for the stress analysis with temperature-dependent mechanical properties. The results obtained from the FEM are compared with the published experimental results. © IMechE 2006.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1497-1508
    Number of pages11
    JournalProceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part C: Journal of Mechanical Engineering Science
    Issue number10
    Publication statusPublished - Oct 2006


    • Finite-element modelling
    • Laser tile grout sealing
    • Thermo-mechanical analysis


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