University of Pennsylvania graduates have created the first desktop waterjet that is able to cut most soft and hard materials with a similar level of precision to a larger, more expensive system – and with a lower cost.
About the desktop waterjet
The innovative piece of tech is called Wazer, and it combines sand-like abrasive particles (created from crushed garnet) with high-pressure water to cut through all kinds of materials, such as carbon fibre and steel. The Wazer waterjet can make cuts which are around 1.5 mm in width.
Costs are lowered by reducing the water pressure, which does make cutting slower, but precision is unaffected.
According to Nisan Lerea, a co-founder of Wazer, the tool offers something that no other product on the market does: “The most widely used parallel to what we’re offering would be a desktop laser cutting machine, which works similarly — only using lasers instead of water. We’ve created a tool that can cut through virtually any material: steel, titanium, aluminium, stone, ceramic tiles, glass, a whole variety.”
Lerea hopes that the Wazer will do for metal and glass what the laser cutter does for plastics, and a campaign has been launched on Kickstarter to help get the product to market.
The future of metal cutting
With technology such as this coming on the market, it seems clear that metal cutting machinery is going to become smaller and more convenient. In the digital age, technology is driven by usability, so we can look forward to metal cutting becoming easier and quicker over the coming years.
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