Laser Micro Machining

Although similar in concept to traditional machining operations, laser micro machining (laser micromachining) is capable of creating extremely small features – generally under 1 mm, and in some cases only a few microns in size – with a high degree of repeatability and without causing damage to the surrounding material.

There is a range of lasers that can be used effectively for laser micromachining. Pulsed fiber lasers and nanosecond UV lasers have demonstrated a high degree of capability in material removal and are suitable tools for applications that do not require pristine quality or extremely tight dimensional tolerances. However, ultrashort pulse picosecond and femtosecond lasers are the superior tools for laser micromachining when the process requires extremely high quality and dimensional accuracy.

Femtosecond lasers deliver their energy over such short pulse durations that they can vaporize material directly from a solid state while imparting almost no thermal energy to the surrounding material – a process known as cold ablation.  The cold ablation process results in high-precision, micron-sized features with no burrs or dross, minimal heat-affected zone, and low surface roughness.

Femtosecond lasers can generate multiple wavelengths, from near-infrared to visible green to ultraviolet, and they are capable of high precision micromachining not just on metals, but also on polymers, ceramics, glasses, shape memory alloys, and highly reflective metals that are often difficult or impossible to machine with other processes.

Laser micro machining applications find uses in fields like medical devices; microelectronics; semiconductor, display, and wafer processing; optics; automotive and e-mobility; telecommunications; and aerospace and defense.

Two common micromachining processes are laser drilling and laser micro milling.

For more information:

Watch a free webinar: Laser Micromachining – A Versatile Solution for High Precision Materials Processing

Read the following articles/whitepapers: Micro Makes Sense,  Laser Micromachining: a Flexible, High-Precision Manufacturing ProcessFemtosecond Laser Processing of Metal and Plastics in the Medical Device Industry.

Read our blogs Ultrafast Lasers Offer Great Promise as a Manufacturing Tool and  Laser Micromachining with Pulsed Fiber Lasers

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