There are several ways to mark metal with a laser. As part of this blog, CSI Manufacturing will discuss the two main methods that use CO2 and fiber laser tubes.
Co2 Laser Source – uses Co2 Gas which is excited by an electrical charge to create energy which is delivered to the surface of the material via a series of mirrors and finally a lens to focus the energy. This laser beam normally operates at a wavelength of 10.6 micrometres. At this wavelength we can vaporise the surface from coated metals and bleach anodised aluminium. However to mark other metals like stainless steel we first have to treat the surface with a heat reactive, metal marking compound e.g CerMark or Thermark which when lasered creates an indelible black mark on the metal and then any surplus compound is washed off with water.
Fiber Laser Source - or a solid state laser pumps intense diode light into fiber optic cables that are doped with the rare earth element ytterbium (Yb3+) to create the energy which is delivered using the same method as the CO2 laser above. However, a fiber laser beam normally operates at a wavelength of 1062 nanometres (1000 times narrower than that of your average CO2). This wavelength will mark metals and industrial plastics directly without the need for pre-treatments. Several types of mark can be achieved with a Fiber laser source by changing focus, speed and frequency of the beam.
Engraving and cutting wood, plastics and marking metals regularly
Dual Source laser system. Co2 and fiber in the one system
Laser engrave and mark your barcodes, serial numbers, text, and logos onto metal with an Epilog Laser fiber metal marking machine. Our fiber laser machines can engrave or mark all types of metals including stainless steel, aluminium, tool steel, brass, titanium, and much more, allowing you to create a variety of mark types in no time! Whether you're engraving one product label at a time or a table full of components, Epilog's easy setup process, job processing features, and precise marking capabilities make our fiber laser machines an ideal choice for your metal and plastic marking requirements.