In carbon dioxide laser cutting technology, carbon dioxide gas is the medium that produces laser beams. Fiber lasers, however, work through diodes and fiber optics cable. The fiber laser system generates a laser beam by a plurality of diode-pumped beams, which are then transmitted through a flexible fiber optics cable to a laser cutting head, rather than through a mirror. This has many advantages, the first is the cutting bed size. Unlike gas laser technology, in which the mirror must be set at a certain distance, fiber laser technology has no range restrictions. And even the fiber laser can be installed next to the plasma cutting head of the plasma cutting bed, which is not an option for CO2 laser cutting technology. Similarly, when compared with a gas cutting system of the same power, the system is more compact due to the ability of the fiber to bend.
The most important and meaningful advantage of fiber cutting technology should be its energy efficiency. With the fiber laser's complete solid-state digital module and single design, the fiber laser cutting system has an electro-optical conversion efficiency higher than that of CO2 laser cutting. For the various power units of the CO2 cutting system, the actual general utilization rate is about 8% to 10%. For fiber laser cutting systems, users can expect higher power efficiency, about 25% to 30%. In other words, the overall energy consumption of fiber cutting systems is about 3 to 5 times less than that of CO2 cutting systems, resulting in an energy efficiency improvement of more than 86%.
The fiber laser has a short wavelength characteristic, which improves the absorption of the light beam by cutting materials, and makes it possible to cut non-conductive materials such as brass and copper. A more focused beam produces a smaller focus and a deeper depth of focus, so that fiber lasers can quickly cut thinner materials and more efficiently cut medium-thickness materials. When cutting materials up to 6 mm thick, the cutting speed of a 1.5kW fiber laser cutting system is equivalent to the cutting speed of a 3kW carbon dioxide laser cutting system. Therefore, the operating cost of fiber cutting is lower than the cost of ordinary carbon dioxide cutting systems.
The fiber laser cutting is more environmentally friendly and convenient, and the carbon dioxide gas laser system requires regular maintenance. The mirror requires maintenance and calibration. On the other hand, fiber-optic laser cutting solutions have almost no maintenance. The carbon dioxide laser cutting system requires carbon dioxide as a laser gas. In addition, many carbon dioxide cuts require high-speed axial turbines to deliver laser gases, while the turbine needs to maintain and renovate.
From the above comparison, although the cutting ability of CO2 is very strong, in terms of energy saving and cost, Optical fiber or occupy a higher advantage, the economic benefits of optical fiber is much higher than that of CO2, in the future development trend, fiber laser cutting machine will occupy the position of mainstream equipment.