Laser Technology to Improve Manufacturing
Laser technology is finding its place in the production lines of an increasing number of manufacturers, replacing industrial processes for a wide range of applications such as marking, cleaning and texturing. For example, dot peening, inkjet printing and printed labels are being replaced by laser marking. Similarly, chemical treatments, abrasive blasting and other mechanical cleaning techniques are being replaced by laser cleaning and laser texturing.
There are good reasons behind this shift: laser technology provides impressive benefits. Among other things, it increases productivity, lowers operation and maintenance costs, and delivers the most consistent results.
How the Manufacturing Industry Benefits from Laser Technology
Adding a laser to your manufacturing process should not mean slowing down your production line. Our high-power lasers can keep up with shorter cycle times than traditional technologies. They’re also the fastest lasers on the market.
With their high precision and repeatability, laser systems contribute to the quality of your product. When a laser beam hits the surface, it does it with the same micron precision every time, generating consistent results.
Reduced Operating Costs
Lasers have a lower total cost of ownership than many alternative technologies. For one, you can finally get rid of consumables. While this significantly reduces operating costs, it also simplifies operations on the shop floor.
Our lasers also have a low power consumption, require few spare parts, and are easily integrated within the production line, hence requiring no human interactions to operate. Laser systems are perfect for manufacturers who are willing to invest in quality tools that provide a high return on investment.
No one wants tools that are always down for maintenance. Contrary to alternatives, laser systems are contactless and thus suffer no wear & tear over time. This makes them perfect for inline integration.
Our fiber lasers have 10 years of operating life and are designed to operate with low maintenance in difficult manufacturing conditions. Our lasers can come equipped with industrial-grade accessories that contribute to the laser’s reliability. Typical accessories include fume extraction systems, lens protection equipment, and barcode readers (for quality inspection).
Applications in the Manufacturing Industry
Laser Marking for Traceability
Laser marking is the most reliable solution for part & product traceability. With near-perfect readability rates, it can be used to mark and engrave permanent & high-contrast codes on a wide range of materials, including metals, plastics, rubber and cardboard. Our product offer includes OEM laser marking systems and turnkey laser marking machines. To ease integration, laser options include an integrated barcode reader and barcode verification software.
Post-Treatment Resistant Markings
Many manufacturers face important traceability issues as they need to integrate the marking operation at the start of their production process. Post-process surface treatments can compromise traceability by lowering contrast levels or even rendering identifiers unreadable.
To solve this issue, Laserax has developed proprietary laser marking processes that maintain high-contrast readability after several surface treatments, including shotblasting, sandblasting, e-coating, powder coating, and heat treating.
Weld Preparation with Laser Cleaning
To strengthen the welds and improve their overall quality, laser cleaning can be used to prepare welding areas by removing surface contaminants such as oxides, oil and grease. Our laser cleaning process is fast enough to be performed at the same time as welding, which minimizes cycle time.
Oxide Removal After Welding
Removing oxides, including rust and mill scale, is essential for a wide range of manufacturing operations. One of them is post-welding oxide removal. Before a welded part is painted or anodized, removing oxides protects the structure and prevents the paint from peeling off over time. Stainless steel parts also require a clean surface across the joint without the blackening that typically results from welding.
Selective Paint Removal
Laser cleaning can be configured to selectively remove paint from a specific area—and nowhere else. You can now replace masking, a costly and labor-consuming operation, with laser paint removal. Instead of masking specific spots like welding areas, you can paint the whole part’s surface, then selectively remove paint from those areas.
Surface Preparation to Improve Adherence
By generating a surface roughness that improves adherence, laser texturing can be used to prepare surfaces for manufacturing processes, such as adhesive bonding, thermal spray coating, and laser cladding. Compared to abrasive blasting machines that require heavy maintenance, laser texturing is a much more cost-effective solution. Not only do you save on maintenance costs and spare parts, but you can also expect a much longer operating life for the machine.
If you have different marking, cleaning, or texturing needs, our experts will quickly let you know if our laser technology is the right choice for you and, if so, what you need to know to successfully integrate it.
Laser Products for the Manufacturing Industry
Laser systems manufactured by Laserax are designed to be easily integrated into manufacturing environments, such as robotized production lines, conveyor systems, or even standalone operations to be launched manually. We offer everything you need to have a fully functional laser, such as fume extraction systems, integrated barcode readers, and Class-1 laser safety compliance.
Easy to integrate, our OEM systems have advanced features specifically designed for high-volume manufacturing environments. We also offer Class-1 laser certification options with all our systems.
With their industrial-grade components, our lasers have an operating life of at least 10 years.
Laserax has designed a broad range of standard turnkey machines ready to be integrated into existing production lines. All machines are 100% safe and follow Class-1 standards for laser safety.
Our standard machines are fully adaptable to your exact needs.