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Laser Etching: What is it and why is it required?

Do you know how a laser works? It has been widely used in all industries for decades, but how it is helping industries. To make a laser, you have to excite the atoms to high levels and make them capable of releasing light when they bounce back to the ground state.

After the creation of the beam, the amplification process begins that aims to develop a focal point. When atoms are first stimulated, a weak light is produced. In continuous motion, more energy builds up and the light beam is now more concentrated.

Laser marking is a common practice in all sectors. There are 2 common uses, laser etching, and laser engraving. What’s the purpose? It helps you leave permanent marks on the surfaces whether it is metal, aluminum, or others. It helps you print logos, serial numbers, and other details to distinguish your item. This blog discussed the laser etching process in detail.

Laser Etching

It is considered a type of laser engraving process. The laser etching process uses more intense beam lights leading to the melting of the material. This melted material will spread and a raised mark will be obtained. Here, the maximum depth is 0.001”. It differs from other laser techniques in the  following ways;

  • The laser etching process modifies the appearances of the metal, so it modifies reflectivity and increases contrast.
  • The maximum surface removal is 0.001”.
  • Ceramics, polymers, and anodized metal surfaces are eligible to be used for such techniques.

Why is laser etching required?

Irrespective of the industry you belong to, you should have recognized the need for part identification. For the sake of reducing error and ensuring part safety, the government has defined some laws and regulations for the manufacturing industry.

Consider the medical equipment manufacturing industry. In the year 2013, FDA released laws addressing manufacturers to include UDI on equipment labels and packages, except where an exemption applies. Back in 2018, FDA modified the rules and asked for visible dates on equipment’s labels (even on products subject to the exemption in the 2013 law).

The law of part identification is not just subjected to the medical industry, and it extends to the automobile industry and others as well.

Take Away!

The use of lasers varies per the industry it is used in. For example, if lasers are used in the manufacturing industry, their daily application includes welding, drilling, marking, etching, and engraving. Laser etching is recommended and preferred when traditional methods fail as it gives you quality markings with minimal effort. For more information, you may refer to lasit.it.

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