Fiber lasers are incredibly complex and intricate pieces of machinery, and even for those who are highly experienced in the industry, there are constant developments and innovations for which we must keep up to date with.
#1 What is a fiber laser?
In short, it’s a type of laser which uses fiber, which has been doped in rare-earth elements (erbium, neodymium, ytterbium) etc. as its medium. This is in contrast to the two main other types of laser on the market; a crystal laser and a gas laser.
#2 Why should I choose a fiber laser?
This is one of the most frequently asked questions that we get here at SPI Lasers, as prospective customers want to know what benefits an investment will provide to them over the other laser models on the market.
A gas laser is the most commonly used laser, but this is because it is the oldest type. A fiber laser, on the other hand, is the newest type of laser to grace the manufacturing world. The reason that we only manufacture and sell fiber lasers at SPI Lasers is that for us there are far more benefits than any other type of laser.
They offer a higher level of efficiency, speed and power, are maintenance-free (thanks to fit and forget technology) and costs are dramatically lower than the alternatives. They can also cut reflective materials, often used in many industries, without any damaging back reflections (using our patented back reflection technology). Finally, they offer the user complete control in terms of beam length, duration, intensity and heat output.
For more information, please find our contact details listed at the bottom of this page.
#3 Which industries can fiber lasers be used in?
Thanks to the wide-ranging benefits that we have listed above, these lasers can naturally be used in many industries, due to their ability to work with so many different materials. We’ve covered this in more detail below.
With regards to the industries, the primary industries that we service are:
- Semi-Conductors and
But you’ll also find that they can even be used in places such as businesses and schools. You can find out more about the industries that we work in by following the links at the very bottom of the page.
#4 Which materials can fiber lasers be used on?
They are great at working with a huge variety of materials. Below are just some of these many materials:
- Various metals, including steel, copper, iron, nickel, aluminium, brass and more
- Gemstones (including diamonds)
- Thin films and
- Brick / concrete
#5 What processes can fiber lasers complete?
There are many processes that can be completed, which are:
- Laser marking – read our laser marking FAQs here
- Laser cutting – read our laser cutting FAQs here
- Laser welding – read our laser welding FAQs here
- Laser drilling – read our laser drilling FAQs here
- Laser engraving – read our laser engraving FAQs here
- Laser ablation – also read our laser ablation FAQs here
- Additive manufacturing– read our additive manufacturing FAQs here and
- Laser cleaning – read our laser cleaning FAQs here
There are some overlap and similarities between some of the processes, so for more information on each of the processes, please find our links at the bottom of this page.
#6 What applications can fiber lasers do?
If you’ve read the three points above and seen what industries these lasers are used within, what materials they can work with, and what processes they can complete, then we’re sure you know they can be used for many different applications! We’ve listed just some of these below:
- Cutting metals for automobiles, planes, white goods, etc.
- Printing barcodes, QR Codes and ID Cards, etc.
- Engraving of logos, symbols, photos, etc. on gifts, trophies, parts, jewellery and many other items
- Used to assist in artwork and stone restoration and cleaning
- Drilling holes to create cooling holes for engines and other intricate/unusual holes
- Welding together two similar or dissimilar pieces of metal and other materials
- Helping to clean and smooth out rough edges on diamonds and
- Cleaning metal and other surfaces in environmentally friendly and non-hazardous ways
This barely scratches the surface (much like laser ablation!) of what they can achieve so, again, to find out more, please find our contact details at the bottom of the FAQs.
#7 Are there different types of fiber laser?
Yes, there are, and these fall into two broader categories; pulsed and continuous wave (CW). A pulsed model is one which emits its laser in pulses, useful for when you need to make things such as small cuts and need to take your time with controlled bursts.
A CW model, on the other hand, emits one long-lasting laser beam, great when you just need to make something like a clean-cut quickly and efficiently.
#8 Fiber or fibre?!
SPI Lasers is an international company that services businesses and industries all over the world, and so we use the American English spelling, which is “fiber” laser. However, you may find them also referred to as fibre lasers, taking the UK English version. Don’t get confused, they both do the same thing!
Have another question?
We’ve tried to cover as much as possible with some of the most common frequently asked questions that we get about fiber lasers, but if you still have further questions then we’re here to help.