Fibre laser cutting creating buzz

Fibre laser cutting is causing a buzz at trade shows around the world in 2016, despite the technology having been around for over a decade. With a combination of reliability, performance and cost efficiency, fibre laser cutting is increasing in demand as industries realise the benefits and reality of this technology.

What is fibre laser cutting?

Fibre laser is a thermal process for cutting metal by focusing a lens at high power on a very small area. Fibre laser cutting uses solid state lasers created through optical fibres pumped with diodes to create a solid gain medium. The laser is generated by means of seed laser and is amplified by particularly designed glass fibres.

High power lasers are focused onto the surface of the metal to be cut, and the energy is then absorbed into the surface of material. This energy is converted into heat, which vaporises or melts the metal.

Advantages of fibre laser cutting

  • Fibre laser cutting machines have fewer components and no gas consumables, so they require virtually no maintenance
  • Fibre laser cutting is over 80% more efficient than CO2 laser cutting systems
  • Operating costs are lower than CO2 laser cutting because fibre laser cutting machines use around one-third of the energy
  • Fibre laser cutting offers great accuracy in all metal cutting. Since there are no beam diversions, with fibre laser cutting, you get precise, clean cuts each time
  • The laser light source has a longer life expectancy than that of a CO2 laser
  • Reflective materials, such as brass, aluminium and copper, can all be easily cut with fibre laser without worrying about back reflections.

Fibre laser cutting has evolved significantly in the past few years and is slowly establishing itself in the metal fabricating industry. There have been significant improvements in fibre laser cutting quality and speed, particularly in regards to thicker materials, which point towards fibre laser cutting playing a bigger role in sheet metal cutting in the future.

Easy to operate, highly efficient and with low operating costs, fibre laser cutting has proven its ability to deliver on full production runs. For more information, contact ShapeCUT on 1800 SHAPECUT (1800 742 732).

Rick.neff at en.wikipedia [CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons