TLM announces new laser cleaning technology partnership with 4Jet Laser Technology
UK firm TLM Laser continues to expand its portfolio of laser-based technologies and systems, by announcing a new partnership agreement with German laser surface processing specialist 4Jet.
The addition of laser cleaning technology to the company’s product offering complements what is an already comprehensive range of laser processes including: welding, cutting, marking, engraving, hardening and 3D additive layer manufacturing. In this article, TLM director Andy Toms explains the benefits that laser-cleaning technology brings to a wide range of applications and industries.
Lasers continue to find their way into a growing number of industrial applications, in many instances offering a highly efficient and more cost effective alternative to traditional technologies and processes, and this is certainly the case for laser cleaning.
The traditional methods used to remove rust, debris or other surface contamination from components typically involve either physical contact with the part through: brushing, scraping, polishing and shot blasting or alternatively through the use of dry ice or chemical substances. Both of these approaches have their own drawbacks as they are either abrasive, which can potentially damage the base material, or in the case of chemicals somewhat aggressive and through their use adding to environmental pollution.
As a result of the issues surrounding the more traditional approaches to component cleaning, laser cleaning is increasingly becoming the preferred method for rust or paint removal and descaling operations.
The new handheld JETLASER platform from 4JET is the latest addition to their range of laser surface processing systems. Potential applications are wide and varied and include cleaning of moulds, tools, fixtures, paint and coating removal operations and pre-treatment of surfaces prior to welding, glueing or coating applications. The JETLASER is currently available in two power levels, 200 W & 500 W average laser power, and is optimised for manual use in the JETLASER M configuration or available for integration to a robot in the JETLASER R variant.
The hand held unit has been designed to offer improved ergonomics and safety. Rather than conventional single hand devices that operate in a similar manner to a gun, the symmetrical 4JET system is based on a two-hand operation that provides for more comfortable use during processing. The 3D printed enclosures on the handheld device mean that it is extremely light to handle and use. The unit is powered by fibre-coupled, maintenance free solid-state lasers, that are integrated into a rugged mobile supply unit.
TLM director Andy Toms commented: “The hand held JETLASER platform offers an entry level, yet very powerful solution for customers that may have a diverse range of cleaning tasks or low production volumes. We are delighted to have been able to add this product as part of our broad laser processing portfolio”.