LASER MARKING TECHNOLOGIES: USE AND BENEFITS

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LASER MARKING
LASER MARKING

Laser marking, to understand in simple words, is a permanent process of creating a lasting mark on any surface using a beam of concentrated light. It is a simple process of engraving on a material surface, however not with stone or other objects but engraving with laser light. 

There are thousands of laser marking companies across the world. For example, there are many laser marking Los Angeles moving companies in Los Angeles, California.  This article is about laser marking technologies industrial. You can learn more about laser marking through this article.

More about laser marking

The full form of LASER is Light Amplified by the Stimulated Emission of Radiation. Laser Marking Technologies industrial laser marking can be done using fibre, continuous-wave, pulsed, green, or UV laser machine. It can be either automated or processed. The main function of laser marking is to leave permanent traceability marks on many types of materials, such as steel, aluminium, titanium, copper, plastic, ceramic, wood, glass, cardboard and paper. The common marks include text with serial numbers and part numbers, unique ID codes, 2D Data Matrix codes, machine-readable data like barcodes, and simple graphics. 

Common laser marking application types

  • Carbon migration

This helps in making dark or black permanent marks. When the metal or metal alloys are heated, it causes metal to chemically bond with traces of carbon molecules at parts surface or nearby.

  • Annealing

When the colour of the material changes on heating depending on the temperature of the heat, it is known as annealing. Usually, red, green, or yellow colours can be acquired through annealing. This happens through the oxidation process while heating. However, you can see the permanent mark and colour only after cooling down of the heated material.

  • Engraving

Engraving here means simply engrave marks on the material with the help of laser light. Usually, texts, logos, barcodes, date or time stamps, serial numbers, 2D Matrix codes, etc., are marked using laser markers.

  • Discolouration

The discolouration is usually done in plastics. As the name suggests, discolouration means discolouring something. The discolouration on plastics is acquired when the laser’s localized heating interacts with the pigments and changes colour. Dark plastics become white, and light colours become grey or black through this process.

  • Etching

Etching is similar to engraving, and sometimes, these words are even used interchangeably. However, the slight difference between these two processes is that etching is lighter engraving while engraving is much deeper. For example, laser etching depth can be 0.0001 in. Depth while laser engraving can be 0.0005 or more in. Depth.

How does laser mark function?

A beam of light is being focused on the surface of the material in that part where we are supposed to make the mark, and the properties and the appearance of the material gets altered when the beam touches and interacts with the surface. The beam, mainly targeted towards that specific required area to receive a mark. This way there the mark will become precise and readable.

In the beginning, a laser beam happens to be an atom and when these atoms get stimulated, light particles gets released. This very light thus released after stimulation is mainly used or directed towards the laser marking part or area of a material. The energy thus released is measured in wavelengths or nanometers, and the laser beam becomes more powerful with the increase in wavelength.

Laser markers such as UV laser markers have a lower wavelength of around 355NM and mainly used for marking heat-sensitive materials like glass or plastic. Hence, it is usually used to mark soft products. On the other hand, fibre laser markers have a higher wavelength of around 1070NM, and hence it is used to create marks on harder materials like metals. 

Laser marker benefits

There are many benefits of using a laser marker. It is both time and energy-saving as there’s no need for engraving or making marks with hands using nails and other sculpting objects. Precision and readability include other things guaranteed with a laser marker.  Besides, there are many other benefits as well. You learn more about the benefits of using laser markers below.

  • A very efficient way of creating marks on materials.
  • Precise and readable.
  • High quality and clear.
  • Time and energy-saving.
  • Reduces costly threats like counterfeiting and quality issues.

Materials

The laser marker, used in a wide variety of materials. Some common materials includes:

  • Paper
  • Glass
  • Plastic
  • Steel
  • Ceramic
  • Plastic
  • Stainless Steel
  • Wood
  • Cardboard
  • Aluminium
  • Titanium
  • Copper 

Laser marking technologies industrial application

Laser marking technologies industrial applications are many. Used in a wide variety of industries, from aerospace to medical devices. 

Aerospace

In the aerospace industry, every part of an aircraft, from wings down to the smallest components, have been marked. All the marking, conducted mainly using laser marking technologies. 

Automotive

All the automotive parts, also, marked using laser markers. This ensures traceability and efficiency. 

Electronics

Each and every electronic object from circuit boards down to barcodes have been permanently marked using laser markers.

Medical devices

Surgical equipment, trays, molds, syringes, tubing, etc.; remains marked with marks including barcodes, serial numbers, logos, certifications, etc., using the laser marker.

Other

Besides, all the other commercial and home-use products, such as a packet of chips or milk or oil or biscuits, sanitary, stationaries, etc., uses laser marking technologies to mark barcodes, dates, or numbers. There is no industry that does not use laser marking technology. For example, there are many Los Angeles movies companies are there in Los Angeles, California, for laser marking. 

How to choose the right laser marking technology?

Choosing the right laser marking technology is very important while marking because your mark has to be precise, readable and high-quality. Well, choosing the right laser marking technology depends on the type of material that you want to put the mark on. Then it depends on what type of mark you want to engrave and safety considerations.

As I mentioned above, choosing the right laser marking technology depends on the material. There are different types of material, and they require different types of laser markers. Basically, soft materials like glass or paper require UV laser markers because the UV laser markers have low wavelengths. It has wavelengths of 355NM, which is suitable for plastics, paper and glass. On the other hand, metals require fibre laser markers because fibre has higher wavelengths of nearly 1070NM, which can easily make marks on harder objects such as metal. Similarly, CO2 lasers, mainly used for marking date codes, serial numbers, etc., in wood, rubber, cardboard, plastics, etc.

Besides, it also depends on the type of marks that you want to make. For example, barcodes should have frosted backgrounds and dark marks. Therefore, diode-pumped lasers, used for higher contrast marks such as barcodes.  Similarly, for deeper marks, you have different laser markers.

Laser is something harmful to you if you don’t use it with safety precautions. You need to protect your eyes and skin while doing any kind of heavy laser marking. Make sure to wear helmets to cover your face and good rubber gloves to protect your hands. Try to wear fully covering clothes for safety concerns.

Final Takeaway

Laser marking technology has lessened the burden of engraving with hands which required plenty of time and workmanship. Now, we just need the right laser machine for the material we want to get engraved and that’s it! The work will be done within few minutes and that too with great precision. Hence, with the minimum effort, we can now get the perfect mark. Laser marking technology is, therefore, one of the greatest human endeavours. 

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