Product Code: ICAL06_P544

Laser Cutting of Natural Stone Slabs
Antonio Riveiro, Universidade de Vigo; Vigo Spain
Mohamed Boutinguiza, Universidade de Vigo; Vigo Spain
Ramón Soto, Univerisdade de Vigo; Vigo Spain
Félix Quintero, Universidade de Vigo; Vigo Spain
Fernando Lusquiños, Universidade de Vigo; Vigo Spain
Juan Pou, Universidade de Vigo; Vigo Spain
Mariano Pérez-Amor, Universidade de Vigo; Vigo Spain
Presented at ICALEO 2006

Granite is a crystalline natural stone, which is considered to be one of the best materials in all type of constructions, due to its durability, easy maintenance and aesthetic. There are different varieties of granites, depending on the proportion of its three main minerals, feldspar, quartz and mica. However the high hardness and heterogeneous composition of granite make it very difficult to machine by conventional methods. In this work, we present the results of a series of experiments carried out to cut natural stone slabs of the variety "Black South Africa" granite using a CO2 laser assisted by a supersonic nozzle. The influence of the different parameters involved in the process, such as, average power, pulse frequency and nozzle position have been studied to characterize the cut geometry. Results from the tests show that it is possible to obtain sound cuts free of fractures in this type of natural stone.

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