If we go back to laser cutters' history, we would see C02 lasers on the top. And if you look at the current trends, Co2 still is one of the most useful. The technology that Kumar Patel invented in 1964 is still one of the finest laser cutting/engraving machines.
And no doubt, you can get Trumpf laser parts for the same. Bystronic also provides Bystronic laser consumables for the Co2 lasers.
It provides high power, precision, and consistency. The sole reason why many businesses use Co2 lasers for personalization.
Their engravers and cutters are so precise that they can create any design on any material. It doesn't matter if it's wood, metal, plastic, or paper.
How does a Co2 Laser Works?
In Co2 laser cutters, the light is produced when electricity runs through a glass-filled tube. There are mirrors on both ends of the tube. One is reflective, and the other allows light to pass through it. These mirrors help laser beams to cut. The gas in the tube consists of helium, carbon dioxide, hydrogen, and nitrogen.
The nitrogen molecules in the tube get charged. They start producing high-energy vibrations that excite Co2 molecules. And then comes a stage of population inversion where nitrogen has to release the energy. It then comes in contact with cold helium particles and releases energy in the form of photons that produce a beam of light.
The released light is more potent than normal light because of the mirrors. So, the mirrors reflect the light and cause waves to build in intensity. The light passes through the partially reflective mirror only when it's bright enough.
Since it's infrared, it has a high wavelength and can cut any material. The intensity of the light vaporizes the material, thereby leaving a smooth touch.
Depending on the material you want to engrave or cut, you can decrease the power and speed.
Co2 Laser Specifications: Lenses, Lifetime, and Spare Parts
Just like the different power capacities of Co2, there are different types of lenses available for Co2. Based on their focal length, their purpose differs. Let's check them out.
1. Lens 1.5"
To engrave small letters or details, these lens resolutions are highly recommended. They produce a laser beam between 0.0762 and 0.1651mm. They are suitable for materials with a thickness of less than 1.8mm.
2. Lens 2"
These are the standard lenses available in most lasers. They produce a beam between 0.1 and 0.18mm. They are best to cut or engrave materials with a thickness between 300 and 600 dpi.
3. Lens 4"
They produce a more focused cut at a vertical distance. Experts highly recommend these lenses for engraving and cutting thick material.
The lifetime of your laser lens highly depends on its use and handling. Maintenance is another factor that defines its lifetime. Keeping this aside, the quality of the consumables and parts also affects its durability.
For some lenses, the approx durability is around 6 to 9 months. So before you buy one, discuss it with your provider.
Lasers of any type highly depend on their consumables and parts. So when you replace the parts, make sure they are of top brands. We would recommend going with Trumpf laser parts. For consumables, Bystronic laser consumables.
Also, check out other brands such as Hypertherm, Fanuc, Mazak, etc.
Uses of Co2 Lasers
We already saw that they are the best option for personalization and high precision cutting. Besides this, you can also use them for welding or in the additive manufacturing process of selective laser sintering.
Co2 lasers are also useful in the medical field. Many surgical procedures utilize Co2 lasers as water could easily absorb the high frequency of light and make tissues.
Laser surgeries and skin resurfacing also make use of Co2 lasers. They are also used to treat skin conditions such as hirsuties papillaris genitalis by removing bumps.
Other branches such as dentistry, gynecology also use these lasers.
Artists providing custom wooden engraving designs use it for personalization.