In the past, before laser cutters, cutting through materials was a laborious and relatively inconsistent procedure. However, the introduction of laser cutting technology has transformed many industries. Laser cutting services mean a range of businesses can now cut through a wide range of materials with speed and accuracy, making a laser cutter an indispensable tool in modern production. Furthermore, laser cutting technology is generally affordable and requires little maintenance.
As a result, you’ll find laser cutters used in a wide variety of sectors, including car production, aerospace engineering and even signage. Laser cutting technology is set to become even more common in the future, particularly in manufacturing, as it continues to help both small enterprises and huge organisations. But how did we get here?
Laser cutting is a technique that uses a laser to cut various materials for both industrial and aesthetic purposes, such as engraving. To guide the beam, a high-powered laser is directed by optical and computerised numerical control (CNC). Usually, a motion control system is used to follow a CNC or G-code of the design to be cut onto the material.
The laser beam itself is produced by electrical discharges or lamps inside a confined container stimulating lasing materials. The lasing material is boosted by being inwardly reflected via a partial mirror until its energy is sufficient to exit as a cohesive monochromatic light stream. Mirrors or fibre optics guide the beam via a lens, which amplifies it, and direct it towards the work area.
Depending on the technology, the cut may be achieved by heating, melting or vaporising the material. As a result, laser cutters can be used with lots of materials. You can find laser cutters to cut glass, metal, wood and even diamonds. However, they tend to be specially designed for use with certain materials.
Laser cutter technology, with its high precision and great power, has transformed the manufacturing industry. Manufacturing has long required innovation, greater quality and efficiency. As a result, laser technology entered the picture and transformed the production process. This began when the first laser cutter was made in 1964.
However, since then, the technology has become more precise and wide ranging. This is why it has found applications in the computer, vehicle and apparel sectors. Laser technology has transformed and simplified production across the board. Nowadays, it is difficult to find a consumer product that does not use metal or other laser cutter technology in its manufacturing.
This is in part because laser technology has been shown to be a more efficient and cost-effective technique for creation in the manufacturing industry. Known as the ‘light era,’ industries have embraced this new method of production. This has revolutionised the production process and greatly improved consumer goods. In combination with increased automation, laser cutters can help improve labour efficiency and reduce costs while meeting the expanding requirements of customers.
Laser cutters can be programmed to precisely cut delicate or complex shapes from almost any material of any density.
Key to the laser cutter’s success is that it can be an incredibly rapid production method. Rather than relying on larger machines or humans to cut out shapes carefully, the laser does so easily and quickly.
Along with being able to cut a range of materials, laser cutters offer greater flexibility of manufacturers in the products they create. Laser cutting designs can be quickly made and swapped out as needed, which is a boon to both small and large businesses when expanding their product catalogue.
Unlike welding, gas is not typically used in laser cutting, nor is there much waste produced. As a result, laser cutters create little to no mess and similarly require little cleaning and maintenance compared to other options.
Of course, like everything, there are some disadvantages to laser cutters. The fact that these machines often require more electricity than other kinds of cutters can be an issue for businesses. Similarly, a level of expertise is needed to ensure that those accurate and clean cuts are achieved. Otherwise, materials, time and money can be wasted. However, while these issues can raise the cost of using a laser cutter, the advantages often outweigh the costs for users.
Laser-cutting technology may benefit any product in terms of design for manufacture. Cost and quality are two significant factors influencing the market value of any item, and laser cutting provides high-quality components at a reduced total cost, allowing for a more inexpensive, higher-quality product. Laser cutting also offers greater production flexibility.
A laser generates heat that is many times hotter than the sun, allowing it to cut practically any substance neatly and accurately, from the hardest steel to the tiniest fibres. Because engineers are not restricted in the materials they may utilise, this flexibility adds to the layout of the manufacturing process. Rather than selecting materials only primarily on cost or availability, producers may select the materials that are most appropriate for the job.
Laser cutting also offers greater flexibility in the product development process. Because lasers are not constrained by geometry, pieces do not need to adhere to the limitations of the laser cutter. Because the laser never really touches the object being cut, components can be orientated in any direction and sliced in any shape or manner.
Laser precision cuts also require little to no post-cut processing in many circumstances, which speeds up the production process. Ultimately, there are many good reasons laser cutting has become critically significant for a range of businesses, allowing many items to reach the market faster and at a lower cost.
Over the years, scientists’ persistent invention and work have resulted in the development and perfection of metal laser cutter technology and more. Whether you regularly need pieces cut or only every now and then, laser cutting is the smart choice for a host of reasons. That’s why Lightning Laser is pleased to offer our precise and affordable laser cutting services.
From creating custom signage and decorations, to assisting in the development of key parts and technology, our experienced team can provide you with the power of laser cutting. So, get in touch with us today!