Air, the "life gas" we breathe every day, it covers the earth's surface in layers, mainly composed of 78% nitrogen, 21% oxygen, 0.94% rare gases (helium, neon, argon, krypton, xenon), 0.03 % Carbon dioxide, a mixture of 0.03% of other substances (such as water vapor, impurities, etc.). In the Laser Cutting Process, what is air cutting and what advantages does it bring? Let’s take a look today.
Fiber Laser Cutting Machine Air cutting principle ▼
In fact, the cutting principle of air is similar to that of nitrogen. It relies on the energy of the laser to melt the metal and blow away the melt using high pressure. During this period, some metal substances will oxidize or burn, forming metal oxides on the cut surface. For example, gray solid Al2O3 (alumina), black solid Fe3O4 (black iron oxide) and CuO (copper oxide) are generated.
The air itself exists in the atmosphere. It is compressed into an air storage tank by an air compressor, and then filtered, cooled, and dried to remove water and oil from the air, and then it can be used. Because the air contains about 21% oxygen, it can make up for the lack of oxygen and nitrogen to a certain extent.
In theory, air can cut all metal materials that can be melted by laser energy.
Fiber Laser Cutter Air cutting efficiency and effect experiment
6KW laser cutting machine was used to test the effect of cutting stainless steel, carbon steel and aluminum alloy plates with air, nitrogen/oxygen, respectively.
Test 1: Nitrogen and air cutting stainless steel comparison ▼
The above picture shows the cutting effect of 10mm to 4mm stainless steel in order. Compared with nitrogen cutting, the air cutting section is darker, but there is no slag. After polishing, the section can also achieve a brighter effect. In terms of speed, air cutting stainless steel is slightly faster than nitrogen, but the advantages are not obvious.
Test 2: Comparison of oxygen and air cut carbon steel ▼
The above picture shows the cutting effect of 10mm to 3mm carbon steel in turn. Compared with oxygen cutting, it can be seen that 8mm carbon steel has a slight slag hang, and 10mm slag is more serious. Therefore, air cutting is not recommended for cutting carbon steel plates above 10mm.
Test 1: Nitrogen and air cutting aluminum alloy comparison ▼
Effect analysis: The cutting effect of the aluminum plate in the above figure is 10mm to 3mm in order. Compared with nitrogen cutting, air cutting has a fine cross section and less slag. In terms of speed, the air-cut aluminum plate is slightly faster than nitrogen, but the advantages are not obvious.
From the comparison of the above air and nitrogen/oxygen cutting effects and efficiency when cutting plates of different materials and thicknesses, we can draw a conclusion: in the case of relatively loose requirements, we can choose air cutting with greater cost advantages . Relatively speaking, the combined use of air as a cutting auxiliary gas is also a way to greatly reduce production costs.
However, it should be noted that when using air cutting, the air must be filtered by the cold dryer, and the air compressor and cold dryer need regular maintenance. If the air entering the cutting head contains water and oil, it will pollute the gas pipeline in a short time, causing fogging of the protective lens, which will affect the cutting quality. In addition, if the protective lens is not replaced in time, the internal temperature of the cutting head may increase under the irradiation of the high-power beam, which may cause damage to the internal lens group.
Editor's Tip: In the production process, only by combining cutting efficiency, cutting cost, and cutting effect can we find the most cost-effective cutting solution that is most suitable for the current cutting needs, bringing us better quality production! Laser cutting machine Supplier Durmapress Laser has been focusing on laser cutting for more than ten years, providing laser intelligent equipment solutions to users worldwide. The company upholds the concept of efficient, intelligent, environmentally friendly and compatible product development, creating a diversified and comprehensive line of laser intelligent equipment products. At present, products and equipment are widely used in precision equipment, auto parts, kitchen hardware, electronic and electrical, smart home and other industries, and are exported to more than 100 countries and regions around the world, and are well received by customers.