The future is getting closer and the speed with which the technology evolves increases exponentially: some sectors, more than others, are positively affected by this upgrade. Technology evolves, costs are lowered and what was once an exception becomes the norm: there are many fields where laser technology is used and the laser markers market has developed considerably. The use of this technology is vast and from the 90s onwards it has become more and more concerned.
What is a laser marker?
The laser is used in the vast world, from veterinary to dermatology, and is also used in the mechanical world, laser cutting for example, or in the world of Hi-Tech. Often, however, we forget that the first major diffusion of laser technology is linked to markers or instruments able to apply an identifier, whether numerical or not, on a product. Banally laser markers allow numerical pieces and materials through a laser beam exploiting different processes known as incision, discoloration, annealing or removal: each process is evaluated on the basis of the material and the qualitative yield of the marking to be obtained. The great advantage of laser markers is related to the speed of realization and, not to be underestimated, the durability and resistance of the marking: regardless of the material to be marked, the laser marking has a significantly greater yield than any manual marking and combines this technical efficiency with incredibly short timings. The machine can work both automatically and in a manual mode through the use of a controller that allows the operator to identify the ideal position for marking.
Types of lasers and materials
One of the advantages of laser markers is to enjoy high adaptability and different types of lasers are available on the market: depending on the material to be marked, there will be several options to choose from. A laser gas, for example, uses a gaseous mixture of electrically excited C0²: by its very nature it is not suitable for metallic materials, but being endowed with good performance and high beam quality, it is one of the most widespread lasers in marking. of materials such as wood, glass, paper, plastic, leather or acrylic materials, stone and fabrics. Quite different is the fiber laser strongly recommended for metallic materials: it is equipped with an intensity of the radius about 100 times greater than the gas laser and a very high average life. A product, even without maintenance, work for at least 25 thousand hours. The choice, as I said, is wide and the technology in continuous development: there are models that allow a regulation of the duration of laser pulses increasing the flexibility of the device. Furthermore, fiber lasers and gas lasers are not the only alternatives: there are also crystal lasers, suitable for metallic and plastic materials. They are in direct competition with fiber lasers, but have some drawbacks related to the wear of the material, glass for example is extremely delicate, and in general require quite frequent maintenance. If a good fiber laser device lasts at least 25 thousand hours without any maintenance in the case of a crystal laser it will be necessary to replace the pumping diodes after about 10 thousand working hours: the average life of the appliance is therefore halved. In any case on the market will be available the marker suitable for your needs, both in terms of material and quality.
Before concluding it seems appropriate to explore the different marking techniques: it is clear that depending on the material to be marked and the type of laser chosen, the marking mode will be different. Some devices work with the so-called marking for annealing: this technique is used on metals and exploits the heat of the beam to activate the oxidation process of the material that alters the surface color of the metal and thus allows to obtain numbers, signs, markings in general. If, on the other hand, you want to proceed with plastic materials, the bleaching technique may be suitable: it is a rather intuitive term that we can easily imagine. The laser uses chemical reactions to obtain different shades of color. Finally, we can resort to to two other techniques that deserve more attention because of easy ambiguity: engraving and excision. A laser marker is different from a laser cutter, which is a laser that aims to cut a material: the marker works on the surface layers, has a different radius intensity and the same incision minimally affects the resistance of the material that can be considered intact. Once the difference between cut and marking has been clarified we can define the difference between intensity of different radius and the same incision minimally affects the strength of the material that can be considered intact. Once the difference between cut and marking has been clarified we can define the difference between intensity of different radius and the same incision minimally affects the strength of the material that can be considered intact. Once the difference between cut and marking has been clarified we can define the difference betweenlaser engraving and removal: the first involves small cracks, incisions in fact, while the second one removes only the material and exploits the contrast due to the different coloring of the layers of material. Very special is the technique that exploits the formation of foam: once again the marking is obtained thanks to the different coloring of the layers but in this case the marked areas will be clearer: it is used especially for very dark plastics.
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