Product Code: ICA12_801

A Technical and Commercial Comparison of Fiber Laser and CO2 Laser Cutting
John Powell, Lulea Univ. of Technology, Laser Expertise Ltd; Luleå Sweden
Alexander Kaplan, Lulea Univ. of Technology; Lulea Sweden
Presented at ICALEO 2012

This paper presents a direct comparison of fiber laser and CO2 laser cutting machines from a "what laser should you buy next?" point of view. Both types of machine have their drawbacks and advantages, and a direct comparison needs to compare costs, cutting speeds, cut quality and several other factors, including maintenance and safety considerations. The overall conclusion of the paper is that, from a jobshop perspective, the CO2 laser is a more versatile tool, but a fiber laser would be a useful addition to an existing team of 3 or 4 CO2 machines. On the other hand, for manufacturers of such things as white goods and air extraction equipment, where thin sheet metal is cut in large quantities, the fiber laser is the obvious choice.

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