Aluminum is a material with a wide range of industrial applications due to its light weight and impeccable mechanical properties. Aluminum is highly compatible with fiber lasers because it absorbs the fiber efficiently, reducing marking time.
When marking aluminum products, a fiber laser engraver with higher laser power should be used. As a result, this generates more energy and improves labeling efficiency.
2. Plastics and polymers
The industrial manufacturing industry uses plastics such as ABS, Nylon, Delrin and polypyrene for product manufacture. Each has its own unique properties, but when it comes to laser marking, there are a few things to keep in mind:
Smoke generation: Do not use a atomstack fiber laser marking machine to mark plastics that emit smoke. If you must, you need to mark the correct environment with protective gear. An example of such a plastic is polyvinyl chloride, which gives off chlorine gas, a highly toxic gas. In addition, you can also choose a fiber laser marking machine with controllable laser power. We recommend HS-FL10 and HS-FL20
Laser Power: Plastic is very soft. Therefore, you should be able to choose the right fiber laser marking machine. For example, most hobbyists recommend using a pulsed fiber laser to make high-contrast marks on plastic parts. Make sure to adjust the laser power and pulse duration to the plastic part to reduce melting or conversion from engraving to etching.
Color: The expected marking color also depends on the laser power.
In general, for plastic polymers, you should choose from the following. However, be sure to tune the laser power. You can check this by asking a tech enthusiast or trying out a little plastic.
3. Silver and Gold
Due to its aesthetic qualities, laser engraving is a commonly used marking technique in the jewelry industry. However, this technique requires a marking machine with the correct precision and accuracy to reduce waste. In addition, each material has special properties related to marking, since silver is easily oxidized during the marking process, although gold is easier to mark.
The accuracy of fiber laser marking machines makes them one of the most commonly used silver and gold laser marking machines. While there are several types, pulsed fiber lasers such as the HS-FL50 are the most recommended due to the highly reflective surface of metals.
Engraving silver and gold with a fiber laser may not produce sufficient contrast. In this regard, you can use a laser annealer. In addition to contrast, annealing removes less material, making it more suitable for silver and gold.
4. Stainless steel
Stainless steel is a popular material used to manufacture parts in almost every industry. However, unlike most of the materials on this list, it comes in multiple types (or grades), each with a different composition and unique percentages. Therefore, it is very important to choose a suitable fiber laser marking machine.
Due to the high laser power, fiber lasers are suitable for marking stainless steel. For example, the HS-FL50 makes stainless steel marking easier. In addition, stainless steel can effectively absorb the wavelength of fiber lasers and perform color engraving in 16 to 32 colors depending on the marking machine selected.
Engraving stainless steel will result in removal of the chromium oxide protection. Therefore, laser annealing is a better anti-engraving marking technique. It uses low power for extended periods of time and causes less damage, protecting the chromium oxide layer and preventing corrosion.
Titanium is often used in harsh environments, so the need for high-quality and permanent laser marking machines is paramount. Besides, titanium is suitable for different industries, and the marking machine selected must provide compatible marks. For example, in the medical industry, titanium is used as surgical implants. Therefore, markers must be sterile and durable. Another example is the aerospace industry, which ensures that parts do not break.
Fiber laser marking can produce permanent marks on any titanium component. Furthermore, as with any laser marking technique, marking is sterile and, with controlled laser power, does not cause structural damage.
In addition to engraving, you can use other laser techniques to mark titanium, including annealing and ablation, depending on the application, life expectancy and conditions of use. For example, annealing is favored by the aerospace industry because it limits structural damage.
Black rubber is a flexible material with high tear and abrasion resistance. It comes in different types, such as natural rubber and silicone rubber, each of which is compatible with fiber lasers due to their softness and high absorption.
There are several fiber lasers suitable for marking black rubber such as the HS-PFL20S/HS-PFL30S. However, consider the speed and depth of marking when choosing. The higher the laser power, the faster the marking process.
7. Non-semiconductor ceramics
Non-semiconductor ceramics can be hard or soft, which affects the choice of laser marking machines. Typically, they are difficult to laser mark due to the incoherent absorption of the laser light. However, fiber laser marking machines can provide the necessary markings on certain ceramics. In addition to engraving, other possible techniques include laser etching, which can give ceramics deeper but clearer marks.
Chromium has high corrosion resistance, making it an important material for plating other parts. Besides that, it is also very reflective. Due to its usage, the choice of fiber laser marking machine depends on the laser power and plating thickness. However, you should ensure that the markup only affects chrome and does not penetrate the chrome layer.
9. Fiberglass and carbon fiber
Fiber-based materials such as fiberglass should be marked with the correct machine. This is because using the wrong laser technique or machine can destroy the structural integrity of the fiber, leaving faint marks. Carbon fiber, on the other hand, is easier to mark, but since the material and marking color are the same, you may experience contrast issues.
10. Brass and Copper
Brass and copper have high thermal conductivity and heat transfer properties. Due to the rapid heat dissipation, they are well suited for fiber lasers which are notoriously hot. Additionally, their heat dissipation prevents them from losing structural integrity.
Engraving with a machine such as a 20W fiber laser engraver, you can engrave intricate designs and patterns on brass and copper. Note, however, that the fiber laser's wavelength (1.06 microns) is easily absorbed by brass, and copper does not absorb fiber laser as efficiently as other metals, reducing marking speed.