How About the Effect of Laser Cutting High-reflectivity Materials?
In laser cutting field, cutting or welding the high-reflectivity materials is know as a hard problem. Almost all customers and manufacturers are concerned about whether high-reflectivity materials can be cut by laser cutting machines.
What is and how to distinguish the high-reflectivity materials?
The high-reflectivity materials perform well in electroconductibility. Unlike stainless steel and carbon steel, copper and aluminum have high electroconductibility, but, red copper performs best. With less heating, the copper wire is better than aluminum wire in electroconductibility. In conclusion, the high the electroconductibility, the highly reflective the materials.
2. Surface Brightness
The flatter and brighter the surface, the highly reflective the materials. Stainless steel is classify as a high-reflectivity material even after its coating film is torn off. A wood will also be regarded as high-reflectivity material when it is bright enough to a certain extent, which is unrelated to texture of materials.
3. Surface State
The different temperature (solid or liquid state) of material surface also affects the laser absorption (which represents the degree of laser reflectivity to some extent) . Generally speaking, as the surface temperature rises or if the surface is in liquid state, the laser absorption will be higher than that under low temperature or solid state.
4. Laser Output Wavelength
Different materials will show different laser absorption when the laser is different in laser output wavelength.
For laser cutting or welding, the so-called high reflectivity is a relative concept. Please make accurate judgment according to electroconductivity, surface brightness, surface state and laser output wavelength. But, material designation also plays an important role in above process. Such as, pure aluminum is highly reflective, however, 7 and 8 series aluminum perform worse. Even materials with the same designation also vary from actual situation. Aluminum alloy is easily cut, but pure aluminum shall be treate with caution. Besides, mirror stainless steel is also a kind of high-reflectivity material.