The Benefits of Laser Cutting
Laser cutting is a process in industrial manufacturing that cuts materials with a highly precise laser. Though two kinds of lasers, CO2 and Nd: YAG, are most commonly used, semiconductor lasers are gaining in popularity since they are much more efficient than either of the other two types of lasers.
There are a number of advantages offered by utilizing lasers over traditional mechanical cutting, many of which are dependent upon the material used and the purpose of the components being cut. There are some advantages that stand out no matter what material is being worked on or what the purpose of the finished product.
One such of the advantages of laser cutting over more traditional cutting techniques is that these lasers can accurately produce amazingly complex contours on materials with a high level of accuracy and consistency.
Mechanical cutting techniques require regular maintenance and laser engraving replacement of the tools and machine cutting parts because of the wear that is put on the mechanical elements over time. When cutting large quantities of material or materials that are particularly tough or cumbersome, machine parts can wear out quickly and need replacement rather frequently. In between replacement schedules there will be a steady degradation of quality and accuracy of the cuts the machine is making. However, with laser cutting this does not occur.
This degradation does not occur with laser cutters because there is no physical contact of blades, dies, or other materials with the material being cut.
This lack of physical contact is also beneficial since this eliminates any kind of contamination of either the laser itself or the material being cut.
Contamination of the material can cause faults in the materials and therefore the finished component, while contamination of the cutting surface can lead to a reduction in precision and accuracy.
Heat is another consideration for the equipments since most metals heat up quickly and easily with the friction created in the manufacturing process.
Since lasers have a very small contact area as they cut, the heat produced in the material is considerable less than traditional mechanical methods.
This reduction of heat leads to less distortion in the finished product.
Though disadvantages do exist in laser cutting, such as the higher energy costs that companies will accrue by using the high-powered machines, these costs usually even out since productivity and output is often somewhat increased.