Dr. Peter Schmeringa: The Most Important Is to Have an Idea That Has Potential in Commercial Use
Since 2015, RNDr. Peter Schmeringa has been the director of R&D at the BIATEC LASER TECHNOLOGY and he is an expert in the field of quantum electronics and optics. He has received the prestigious Award for Science and Technology in the category Lifelong Achievement in Science and Technology for the applied research and prototype development of BIATEC LASER BLT F3 device for the laser micro machining of ultra-hard and other materials and for the applied research and prototype development of the automated line for laser processing of wood.
RNDr. Peter Schmeringa has completed his graduate education at the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics of the Comenius University in Bratislava with specialisation in optics and plasma physics. After coming to the Research Institute of Mechanisation and Automation (VUMA), he began working on the development of solid state lasers, trimming technology and the processing of thin-film inductive circuits (IC) and hybrid ICs. Between 1997 and 2000, he developed in cooperation with German company SL and with the establishment of a join company in Slovakia a complex positioning system, including software for laser displays. On the basis of this project, the company has been producing similar products to this day.
The following projects have led to the establishment of the company Biatec Laser Technology. The most important was the project related to the treatment of super hard materials using pulse lasers from femtosecond to millisecond field. At that stage, the performance of lasers are in kW unit in pulse energies in the order of tens of Jouls in millisecond applications and hundreds kW in micro joule area in the pico and femto lasers. Under the leadership of Peter Schmeringa, the BLT company developed cutting machine using fibre lasers PKD, CBN, HSS, HM with speed several times exceeding the present level and non-negligible increase in reliability while minimising costs. This project also comprises of micromachining of these materials with an accuracy of less than 10 micrometre and roughness below 0,3 micrometres. Another project, which is currently only in its infancy, is deep cutting of materials, while the thickness of the cut is in the tens of millimetres.
For now, the last successfully implanted project is the automated line for cutting damp hardwood – oak, beech and other trees with a thickness of approximately 30mm. The Biatec Laser Technology team, in cooperation with experts from affiliate company QUERCUS and foreign partners, have achieved interesting results in the cutting speed and knowledge of the interaction of laser radiation with such material. This solution has already met with a positive response in major timber processors even at international level.
Currently, Peter Schmeringa is devoted to the research of laser micro-machining in pico and femto second area. This is mostly related to addressing the production issue of some elements for health, whereas functional product must be final therefore purity and precision of the work are decisive. He is also starting to work on the project of cutting thick materials, which is an important area for the processing technology of mainly very hard and advanced composite or sintered materials, where the current status is at very low levels. Their better machining can move these materials to entirely different planes of applications in the industry.
Peter Schmeringa believes that researcher, scientist or innovator can positively influence conditions and combine research with entrepreneurship and market economy. The most important thing is to have an idea that has the potential for commercial use. Such situation occurred also when the establishment of the Biatec Laser Technology company was initiated evently by actual research outcomes. After the presentation of partial development results and getting familiar with their applicability and commercial value, the main shareholder agreed with establishment of the new company. One of its main objectives was applied research and development of new technological equipment. The shareholder simultaneously released the funds for the purchase of new equipment and modern machines. In parallel, the production team began to shape, having the task of producing a prototype and preparation and preparation of launching the repeated production. Peter Schmeringa considers essential that the number of companies working on their own development and research in our country increases, because only then that can attract talent young people. He also believes in the importance of support of one’s own thinking, along with maintaining visions and dreams of young people and assistance in their realisation, which can help raise awareness of our nation and its self-identification.
The Award for Science and Technology has been awarded since 2014, replacing the Award of the Minister of Education, Science, Research and Sport of the Slovak Republic. The objective of this transformation is to increase the social prestige of the awards for science and technology.
Please visit the event's website Week of Science and Technology in Slovakia (only Slovak version) to find the list of all awarded in the individual categories, or see the e-newspapers Scientific kaleidoscope.
The main organiser of the Week of Science and Technology in Slovakia is the Ministry of Education, Science, Research and Sport of the Slovak Republic in cooperation with the Slovak Centre of Scientific and Technical Information and the National Centre for the Popularisation of Science and Technology in Society. The general partner of the event is Huawei.
Information provided by: RNDr. Peter Schmeringa
Edited by: Barbora Hrvolová, NCP S&T within the SCSTI
Intro photo: from the archive of Peter Schmeringa
Photo: Ján Laštinec, NCP S&T within the SCSTI
Published by: ZVČ
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