The principle of laser material processing is quite simple: If the laser beam hits the workpiece, part of the energy is absorbed, part of it is reflected and a third part penetrates the material (transmission). The degree of energy absorption is decisive for material processing, because the absorbed energy heats the workpiece. In the case of highly thermally conductive materials, this heat dissipates quickly, which is why these materials are more difficult to process using lasers or a higher laser power, i.e. greater energy input is required.
The advantages of the laser as a tool compared to conventional methods are obvious: maximum flexibility, availability and economy.
In industry, lasers are used for various manufacturing processes in laser machines. The manufacturing processes in the laser material processing technology field include cutting and joining in micro and macro technology as well as surface treatment.
EQ Photonics has a wide range of laser components for both process technologies from innovative manufacturers.
Laser Macro Processing
Laser macro processing means the use of laser beam sources with the highest possible power and constant intensity as continuous wave lasers (continuous wave or CW).
The main applications in laser macro processing are: laser cutting, laser beam joining, laser cladding, laser hardening and applications in additive manufacturing, such as selective laser melting with metallic powder and high laser powers and selective laser sintering for plastics where only low laser powers of a few watts are required.
The key components of a laser processing system are the beam source and a process optic that focus the laser beam and thus bundle the intensity.
Fiber lasers have been used as beam sources for years because they have a very high efficiency, excellent beam quality and a long life time. In addition, thanks to the process fiber, they can be used extremely flexible and the maintenance costs are very low. The CW fiber laser and QCW fiber laser from Maxphotonics combine all these advantages and more in a unique way.
As additional components for the beam source, we offer cutting and welding heads from the manufacturer RayTools and laser chillers from the manufacturer S&A.
Laser Micro Processing
Laser micro processing uses laser beam sources in pulsed operation with as little heat input to the workpiece as possible. The processing is mostly in the fine and high-precision area of heat-sensitive materials.
Beam sources with very short pulses, so-called ultrashort pulse lasers, are particularly suitable for laser micro processing. Femtosecond lasers compress the energy via mode coupling in an extremely short time range, even shorter than with Q-switched picosecond lasers, and therefore have significantly higher peak powers than continuous wave lasers (beyond the megawatt range).
The possible application is diverse, not only medical science field, but also in industry field.
For example, the industrial applications are cutting (sapphire) glass for smartphones or tablets, marking on metals, engraving inside glass, fine processing of implants and medical cutlery and many more.
For some time, EQ Photonics has been working successfully with the manufacturer YSL Photonics, who produces ultrashort pulsed lasers in order to meet the growing demand. YSL Photonics has a very broad portfolio of femtosecond and picosecond lasers with different output powers in the IR, GREEN and UV wavelength range.