The laser cutter is a digital machine that is used for cutting or engraving several materials. Typically, we have seen the usage of this machine for industrial purposes. Nowadays, it is widely obtained by small businesses and schools; even many people also use it for hobbyists.
Laser cutting is a motion control system combining laser optics and CNC technology. With the thin and focused laser beam, you can cut into pieces the material and shape or design it. The process looks pretty cool. So Let’s take a look at this article to get to know everything about the laser cutter.
How does the laser cutter work?
Using a laser beam generator, you can complete the laser cutting process. The laser beam is a simulation column of high power light where the diameter is within 0.1 to 0.3 mm, and the power rate is 1 to 6 kW. The thickness of the materials decides power and diameter. These powers are usually best for thin elements, but you need power while cutting the heat conductive properties like aluminum or metal. Here is the laser cutting process:
- The laser generator is an airtight tube where two mirrors are placed facing each other. The glass tube is loaded with gases like hydrogen, carbon dioxide, helium, and nitrogen. While the electricity hits the gases, the tube discharges energy in the light form.
- The emitted light recoils in different directions so it needs to be strategically positioned so that it targets the cutting head. Usually CNC control is used to control the light beam. It passes through a nozzle distance that allows the materials to melt with precision out of the kerf.
- The cutting accuracy depends on the nozzle distance, which is the length between the plate and the tube. For better quality, you need to maintain the focal point.
There are three types oflaser cutters and those are:
1. CO2 Laser
The CO2 laser is the most popular laser type and it works in the same process as we mentioned earlier. It is also called a reflective laser process that produces individual light in the far range. This laser can emit 25 to 100 kWatts power with a wavelength of 10.6 mm, which is widely used on an industrial basis. This laser type is effective for non-metallic elements like leather, paper, wood, acrylic plastics. Nowadays it is also utilized in food product processing. However, you can cut out thin aluminum sheets.
2. Fiber Lasers
Fiber laser boosts up the beam using glass fiber and produces energy from the pump diodes. The laser machine is designed for cutting the solid slate and offers extremely little focal diameter. Usually, the fiber laser buying and maintaining cost is expensive but they execute more stable and stronger beams. It can be used for metallic and non-metallic stuff such as wood, plastic or glass.
3. Nd:YAG Lasers
The nd:YAG is the most powerful cutting type but the major drawback is the cost which is very expensive. Typically, this laser device is used in medical motives and also for manufacturing premium devices. It is effective on metallic and non-metallic objects even in plastic.
Laser cutting was invented around the 60’s but now it has been used widely in mechanical processes. Using this technology, it is easier to cut out with precision. Even it cuts out such strong or micro materials that is impossible with traditional ways. It has brought a lot of success in the field of treatment and many critical operations can be done properly.