Laser technology uses the energy released when a laser beam strikes the surface of a metal sheet to melt the metal sheet and blow the slag away with a gas. The laser source generally uses a carbon dioxide laser beam with a working power of 300 to 5000 watts. This level of power is lower than what many electric home heaters require, but, through lenses and mirrors, the laser beam is focused on a very small area. The high concentration of energy enables rapid localized heating to melt the sheet metal.
The special chiller for laser cutting machine is very concentrated, so only a small amount of heat is transferred to other parts of the metal sheet, resulting in little or no deformation. Using the laser, complex-shaped blanks can be cut very accurately without further processing of the cut blanks.
Laser cutting equipment can be used to cut stainless steel below 16mm, and oxygen can be added to the laser beam to cut stainless steel with a thickness of 8-10mm, but a thin oxide film will be formed on the cutting surface after oxygen-added cutting. The thickness of the cut can be increased to 16mm, but the size error of the cut parts is large.
The price of laser cutting equipment is quite expensive, but since the cost of subsequent processing is reduced, it is still feasible to use this equipment in large-scale production. Because there is no tooling cost, laser cutting equipment is also suitable for producing small batches of parts of various sizes that were previously inaccessible. Laser cutting equipment usually uses a computerized numerical control technology (CNC) device, after which the cutting data can be received from a computer-aided design (CAD) workstation using a telephone line.