Laser cutting is typically used in a large industrial setting to cut materials such as metal and plastic. It uses a laser, usually directed by a computer, to melt or burn the material. Although it is able to produce a high-quality cut and is very precise, the laser-cutting process has disadvantages.
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When using the laser-cutting process for plastic, the fumes that the plastic produces when melted can be toxic. This means that the machine will need to be placed in a well-ventilated environment, which can take a lot of time and money to create.
The laser-cutting process cannot be used for all kinds of metals. Copper and aluminum are unable to be cut with a laser because they are too thick and reflect too much light. Brittle, transparent materials such as glass and crystal also cannot be cut.
A lot of energy is required to keep the laser cutter running. The exact amount of energy used is dependent on the type of laser, how much is being cut, the thickness of the material and the cutting rate. Nonetheless, a tremendous amount of power is used, especially in industrial applications.
While laser cutting is a fast process, the rate of production will not always be so consistent. It will be contingent on the type of laser, thickness of the material and type of material.