Laser welding systems are indiscriminately used in a variety of fields (science, medicine and industries such as automotive, aerospace, electrical/electronics etc.) to efficiently and economically make high-quality joints, by eliminating the need for direct contact. These days, laser can flawlessly join both metal and plastic components. Often, laser welding is used for encapsulating electrical components like switching devices that need to be protected and sealed. Also, it is used in the manufacturing of hypodermic needles, tube assemblies, welding razor components and welding tungsten filaments used in halogen bulbs. Selecting the perfect laser welding machine to suit your needs, is not an easy job. This is a heavy investment for the user and hence, cannot be taken lightly. You need to do some homework in order to decide on the right kind of laser equipment that will serve your purpose and enhance your business. The most expensive laser machines can cost up to thousands of dollars, but you don’t necessarily need to spend that much. With significant research, you can narrow down the essential features that need to be present in your machine and this reduces unnecessary burden on your business.
LASER WELDING MACHINE
Laser welding machines cannot be used singly. They are used in conjunction with Computer Numeric Control (CNC). A laser machine operator uses computers to control his equipment for handling complex and intricate welding tasks. Laser welding process involves the use of conventional YAG as well as fibre optic beam delivery systems that allow accurate focussing of the beam, while welding metals or other materials. These machines are quickly replacing electron beam welding instruments that costs in the range of $800,000 to $1,500,000. In comparison, laser-welding machines are available in the range of $200,000 to $300,000. Laser welding process is less time consuming as it eliminates the involvement of a vacuum chamber. However, this reduces its power and limits its utility to welding of thin penetration materials with a maximum thickness of 0.125 inches.
YAG : YTTRIUM ALUMINIUM GARNET
YAG crystals are use for generating solid state laser beam and it is pump optically by flash lamps or arch lamps. YAG lasers operate in the infrared region of the electromagnetic spectrum, at a wavelength of 1.06 microns. This wavelength is absorbed well by conductive materials and there is a typical reflectance of approximately 20 to 30 percent for most metals. This near-infrared radiation benefits from the use of standard optics to achieve focused spot sizes of about 0.001 inch in diameter. These machines have less power output ranging between 500 to 600 W and spot laser power output of 9.9 KW, used for spot welding. These laser machines are fast in welding thin material. For spot welding, you need to charge and then perform spot welding.
Fiber laser welding machines have higher power output of approximately 10 KW. The laser beams generated here have high consistency and consume significantly less time in welding thick materials including exotic alloys. However, there is no spot function. All through, there is high power generation and this can be used to yield thin cuts, etches and welds.