Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Steel Laser Cutting

Steel laser cutting is a technology through which a high powered laser is concentrated on steel metal with the aim of cutting or shaping it to a desired shape and size. During the cutting, steel metal melts down leaving behind a smooth surface. It is important to note that there is no contact between the laser and steel metal and therefore by using this method of cutting, you can achieve a high level of accuracy and precision.

Due to the high density of steel, laser is the most popular method of cutting it. Steel has found many uses in our daily lives for example making cutting tools, making weapons, in construction and many other uses. In order to achieve a high quality of items produced from steel, you need to use the exact sizes required and this is the reason why you should cut them using a laser.

There are four types of laser beams that can be used when cutting steel. They include carbon dioxide CO2 laser, nitrogen cutting, Oxygen cutting as well as sublimation cutting. When using Oxygen laser, more heat will be produced when the laser makes contact with steel surface due to the presence of oxygen. The extra heat produced further helps to boost the cutting process. On the other hand, additional power will be required when you use inactive gasses for example nitrogen laser.

During the process of steel cutting, the high powered laser is directed to the part of the steel that you want to cut. The laser will first make a hole on the surface of steel and then the cutting is done. After the hole is created, you can cut the steel metal in two ways. The first way is by keeping the laser fixed at one point and then the steel metal is moved. The second way is by keeping the steel metal fixed at one point and then moving the laser. Cutting can also be achieved by moving both the steel and the laser.

When the surface of steel is hit by the laser beam, its temperature rises so fast that when they reach the melting point of steel, the metal will melt and vaporize away. It is important to note that the power of laser used will be determined by the thickness of steel plate. Thicker steel plates will require more power than the thin ones. Thickness will also determine what type of laser that will be used for example carbon dioxide cannot go past 1500 watts and this kind of power can only be used to cut thin steel plates. Thick steel metal plates will require up to 2000 watts and this can best be provided by oxygen laser.

Cutting steel with laser method has several advantages over using other cutting options for example plasma cutting, flame cutting and waterjet cutting. Laser method is faster compared to the other options. It also minimizes the chances of you damaging the steel surface during cutting. However, one must be careful not to suffer burns during cutting. Laser cutting may also require more voltage than the other cutting options.

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