Applications - Laser Cutting and Engraving

What is a Laser Engraving Machine?

A laser engraving machine is a laser that has been optimised to have a higher engraving quality than the specified cutting machines. Engraving machines always give a perfect laser cut result on the same range of materials that the cutting machines can handle. Whereas Thunder Laser Machines are concerned, it’s the use of high powered C02 laser beams that remove surface layers of the material. 

How does laser engraving work?

During laser engraving, the laser processes a shape, graphic, or picture (for instance, a JPG or PNG) on a wide range of materials. The laser horizontally moves along the individual lines of the engraving, and the material that is engraved is removed point by point, line by line. This processing method is known as grid engraving.

Among many other things, shapes or surfaces can be engraved using this method, including pictures, photos,  inlays, logos, fine to thick lettering, and stamps, to name a few.

What is a Laser Cutting Machine?

A laser cutting machine is a laser that has been optimised to cut materials at a faster speed than the specified engraving machines, with a higher standard of cut and a slightly lower standard of engraving.

How does laser cutting work?

Laser cutting is a thermal separation process during which predetermined geometries are traversed and cut by the laser beam. As with engraving, you can use a wide variety of materials. A vector-based file (lines and curves of geometry) is the basis for the cutting process.

This process is used to cut shapes (such as letters, signs, and tags) and applications that have previously been engraved.

Laser Applications and Uses

Laser Cutting Applications

Laser cutting is amongst the most widely used manufacturing processes in the world. Laser Cutters finds a home in industries such as the automotive, aerospace, electronics, medical sectors, and semiconductors and offers a huge range of benefits and uses.

The cutting process works in many different ways compared to how it has previously been done in the past, offering a brilliant new level of quality and reliability to its users.

Industrial Uses & Applications of Laser Cutters 

There are a huge number of application areas, particularly in industrial manufacturing, where a higher output is required but is also used in aerospace (for instance, high-strength components which can withstand the pressures of outer space), schools, the military, and in small businesses.

Laser cutters are used in a wide range of industries, such as cutting stents in the medical industry, cutting parts to shape in manufacturing and industrial settings, cutting silicon for solar cells & semiconductors (including resistors), and cutting of gems (even diamonds) for use in the jewellery industry. Also, delivering precision cutting applications for e-mobility, you can effectively use lasers to cut stator plates, battery foils, and even in the manufacture of various electric vehicle components.

Laser Engraving Application

The laser engraving process involves removing a portion of the material to leave an engraved mark visible beneath. This process, produced by the Laser beam, removes material to create a mark, where it acts like a chisel and blows away the selected areas of the subject material. It’s also a subset process of laser marking where the object is marked beneath the surface, which is also the most common laser marking application.

Furthermore, the depth of the engraving made will depend on the dwell time and the type of material being used. It can be used on various materials, including ceramics, plastics, and all forms of metal. Apart from marking, one can also compare the laser engraving process with ablation and etching, which work in similar ways.

Popular Uses and Applications of Laser Engraving Systems

Laser engraving is wildly popular in jewellery manufacture (particularly engraving of gold & silver) and is used to create works of art. There are many industrial uses as well (for instance, adding information into parts and components). 

Engraving with lasers is used for traditional marking purposes such as logos and serial numbers but has the advantage of depth, making it famous for making dies, stamps, and moulds

 Laser engraving is extensively used in automotive, aerospace, semiconductor manufacturing, electronics, and the medical sector. Laser engraving is heavily used for aesthetic personalisation of items such as trophies, medals, plaques, tankards, and similar things. Also, laser engraving is often used to create barcodes and tracking labels, which has some similarities to marking processes.

Common Applications

Sometimes there can be a bit of confusion surrounding whether or not you can use a single machine for both laser cutting and laser engraving. With Thunder Laser Ireland, you can do both - it’s just a matter of changing the lens. While engraving, for instance, you can use a lens with a shorter focal length to achieve a lot more precision and reduce the emphasis on the cutting depth.

To help demonstrate just how varied this process can be, we have listed below some of the most common applications for the Laser Cutting and Engraving process.  

Wood-Engraving and Cutting

From model making to photo frames to cabinetry, the laser is extensively used in the wood industry with stunning results.

Glass Engraving and Etching

Glass engraving produces an elegant look on wine bottles, beer mugs, or frames.

Leather Cutting and Engraving

Save your precious time and expand your creative options when working with leather using a laser machine for cutting and engraving.

Acrylic Cutting and Engraving

Achieve frosty white graphics by laser engraving cast acrylic and create flame-polished edges with laser cutting extruded acrylic.

Award Engraving

Engrave custom awards from marble, acrylic, brass, crystal, and many more materials.

Signage Cutting and Engraving

Create custom 3D lettering and architectural signs from plastic, wood, and acrylic with a CO2 laser from Thunder Laser Land.

CO2 Laser Marking Spray

Create permanent marks on metal with a CO2 Thunder Laser Machine while preserving the integrity of the original material at the same time.

Barcode ID Laser Etching and Marking

A laser is an ideal choice for barcode engraving and etching. It’s easy to set up, quick, custom engraving of a variety of barcodes.

UID Laser Marking

Unique Identification programs use lasers for identification & traceability of government inventories.

Personal Electronics Device Engraving

Engraving custom graphics on personal electronics items such as laptops, MP3 players, iPads, iPods, and Mobiles is an incredibly profitable application and use for the laser engraver.

Gunstock Engraving and Checkering

With lasers, easily customize gun stocks, scopes, grips, slides, and initials of customers, logos, and barrels with checkering patterns.

Laptop Engraving

Skillfully engrave custom laptop covers for your customers using their designs, and create stunning results on all laptops.

Entrepreneurs: Starting a Laser Business

Find out how people are starting their businesses with a laser with our help and starting your Engraving and Cutting Business.