This paper presents the results of experiments on the strengthening of a metal surface by laser pulses with an intensity of 10^9-10^10 W/cm². A neodymium glass laser with an energy of up to 50 J and a pulse width of about 30 ns was used as a radiation source. The results of the laser strengthening for various areas of the irradiated surface were determined by means of microstructural analysis. A new approach to the creation of an industrial laser for work hardening is discussed. © 2005 Optical Society of America

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