Understanding stainless steel laser cutting

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Image of high speed laser cutting sheet metal

Laser cutting is a very fast-growing industry

Laser cutting metals and other materials is a very fast-growing industry. At very least we should see $multi-billion doubling of the industry in 10 years from 2016. Expectations after that could be even greater.

Leaps in laser cutting technology – supply side boom

On the supply side this growth is driven by huge leaps in technology. It was only a short while ago that CO2 powered laser, and today we have fiber laser technology. Fiber laser is more efficient in all sorts of ways and its carbon footprint, a fraction of CO2. It is also faster, up to double the speed. Various gases including Nitrogen can be used to enhance the capability of fiber lasers that are then more effective across all spectrum of sizes and thicknesses of metals and with increasing efficiency. Most recently lasers are also capable of undertaking work on 3D materials and products, including with use of rotary index machinery.

Demand for laser cutting products also increases hugely

On the demand side, consumers and businesses across the globe, are looking for final products that meet much quicker production times and made to higher precision. Also, automation is strongly supporting inclusion of laser cutting into more processes.

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Broad range of Europe industries use laser cut products

Industries in Europe that make particular use of laser cutting with high-growth expectations in the future are automotive, consumer electronics, defence and aerospace and industrial (the latter is the greatest cohort of demand and includes, food, food tech, pharma, logistics and transport and agriculture).

Laser cutting machinery is highly accessible to businesses

Laser cutting machinery produces with more uniform results consistently (even with much faster speeds) than any conventional fabrication machinery. Downtime (including servicing times) is vastly reduced and most importantly energy is conserved. Competition among machine manufacturers is strong and has made machinery accessible to businesses previously excluded by cost from this important technology.

Industries that make use of stainless steel laser cutting

Stainless steel laser cutting has been closely associated broadly with the food and health industries. In addition, any form of precision engineering is easily undertaken with fiber laser cutting. Given relative speed, efficiency and precision quality of production, laser cutting has become the first choice for many industries. This is especially so in stainless steel fabrication.

Stainless steel laser cutting is the more environmentally friendly option

Stainless steel laser cutting is also the environmentally friendly choice. Laser cutting use less energy (a function also of speed) and does not produce harmful by-products. A similar effort, energy and output can be achieved no matter how small the desired piece. This is also the case for some of the most complicated designs that can be easily programmed into the technological brain of the laser cutting computer, et voila! It is also worth noting that stainless steel is itself the most environmentally friendly within the family of metals. Stainless steel production is less harmful to the environment than its equivalent steel or Aluminium. It is also well-known to be self-healing that ensures it retains its corrosion-resistance, even when damaged. Amazing!

 

Furthermore, no post-production processes (with harmful by-products) are required as laser cutting (and especially fiber laser) delivers clean cuts and smooth finishes.

Many other metals and materials also suitable for laser cutting

Laser cutting is also easily usable for all sorts of other metals and materials including glass, paper, silicon, ceramics, and others.