New option is cost-effective alternative to CO2 and Nd:YAG
Industrial laser manufacturer JK Lasers introduced a 2-kW fiber laser with beam quality and processing powers that the developer said presents manufacturers with “a viable and cost-effective alternative to traditional CO2 and Nd:YAG laser sources.” It said the JK2000FL can be used with different diameter processing fibers from 100 µm to 300 µm for cutting and welding sheet metal: it will cut low-carbon steel up to 15 mm; aluminum alloys up to 6 mm thick, and stainless steel (304) up to 10 mm.
Also, it said the new system would be effective for welding 8-mm LCS and 304SS sheets.
JK Lasers develops industrial lasers and laser processing technologies used to manufacture medical devices, aerospace and automotive components, and electronics and semiconductor parts.
Noting that the new fiber laser is effective for increasing product throughput with no negative effect on product quality, the developer indicated the JK2000FL is well suited to automotive manufacturing, as in tailored blank welding, component welding, remote welding and hydroformed tube cutting. In the aerospace industry, it may be used to weld titanium for aircraft skins and structures, as well as for laser cladding operations.
The JK2000FL delivers a stable output power from start-up, and achieves a consistent focused spot size and beam profile over the complete power range. It is fitted with JK Lasers’ detachable PIPA (plug in, pre-aligned) beam-delivery fibers that incorporate patented back reflection protection to guard the laser from damage when processing highly reflective materials, like aluminum, copper, brass, or titanium.
Compared to Nd:YAG lasers, the JK2000FL is up to 10 times more energy efficient, the developer claimed, due to the use of laser diode pumping at high conversion rates, which delivers wall-plug efficiencies of over 25%. In addition, the 300,000-hours MTTF (mean time to failure) for the individual laser pump sources will extend system lifetime. Both of these details present substantial operating-cost savings for manufacturers, JK Lasers stated.
The JK2000FL retains several benefits available with JK Lasers’ lower power models, including beam quality, user-friendly software, fast modulation, and pulse shaping. It can be fitted with the group’s modular range of customized process tools for optimal performance, and can incorporate an optional timeshare unit that will connect up to four separate workstations simultaneously. Because of its compact footprint, the JK2000FL integrates into most production environments easily.