TLM forms partnership with Universal Laser Systems

TLM Laser has announced a further expansion of its laser technology portfolio to include the comprehensive Universal Laser Systems (ULS) range. This now enables the company to offer laser-cutting solutions for the broadest range of materials including organics, plastics and metals.

The recent addition of the ULS range of laser systems now means that the company is able to offer industry leading laser-cutting solutions for the widest range of materials and applications.

The Universal Laser Systems products provide TLM Laser with a range that includes desktop laser processing systems and stand-alone workstations using technology developed form a “Material Centric Approach”. Universal Laser Systems focus on the materials used by companies, together with their manufacturing processes, to develop highly efficient laser processing “Tools” that can be used on any laser compatible materials.

Primarily based on CO2 laser sources with a maximum laser power of 30W to 150W, this comprehensive range offers working envelopes between 406mm x 305mm x 102mm in height to 1,016mm x 610mm x 305mm in height. This broad choice of lasers, with wavelengths of 10.6μm or 9.3μm, are capable of cutting and / or marking a vast range of materials. 

One of the latest developments from Universal Laser Systems is the XLS10MWH MultiWave Hybrid™, the first and only laser-system to combine multiple laser wavelengths and power levels into a single coaxial beam focused to a common focal plane. The XLS10 MultiWave Hybrid™ accommodates a fixed fiber laser source and two different CO2 laser wavelength sources that can be independently or simultaneously controlled for a virtually infinite number of wavelength and power combinations. The ability to independently control each component of this hybrid laser beam allows optimum laser processing flexibility for an unlimited number of organic and inorganic materials. Moreover, the unique design of the optical system allows all wavelengths to focus into the same plane simultaneously. This makes it possible for the different wavelengths to work together to provide material processing capabilities that have never before been possible. As a result, the MultiWave Hybrid can process any material – even notoriously difficult multi-layered materials with conductive and non-conductive layers. 

Universal Laser Systems' XLS10MWH MultiWave Hybrid™, the first and only laser-system to combine multiple laser wavelengths and power levels into a single coaxial beam focused to a common focal plane)

One example of an existing application using two wavelengths independently is stainless steel cutting. In this application, a 1.06μm laser beam is used to heat the steel locally, thereby increasing its optical absorptivity. Once the material is heated, the 1.06μm laser beam is switched off, and a 10.6μm laser, which is much less expensive to operate, is used to complete the material processing operation. This allows one laser wavelength to modify the properties of the material so the second laser wavelength can carry out the material processing operation, in this case cutting, much more efficiently. 

Key features of the ULS range, which TLM’s customers will benefit from, include a modular architecture. This unique “building block” architecture easily reconfigures field-upgradable platforms, laser sources and focusing optics, offering unsurpassed flexibility as material needs change and businesses evolve. This rapid re-configuration is easily achieved as the full range of factory-aligned laser sources are designed to be field-interchangeable, with no special tools or training needed. 

Universal Laser Systems have also built up an extensive Materials Library, seen as the world’s premier source for information on laser material processing. It provides information on the types of materials that can be laser processed and the processes (laser cutting, engraving and marking) that are possible with a given material. 

In addition, the Materials Library highlights considerations for an individual customer’s laser system configuration that may be necessary to process a given material, in addition to how ULS technology innovations can be leveraged to obtain the best possible results. This library is an evolving resource with updates made on a regular basis.

The addition of the ULS range complements LaserCube, which has been until now, the mainstay of TLM’s laser cutting range. Designed specifically for metal cutting applications on smaller sheet sizes, this compact Fiber laser-cutting platform is also ideally suited to smaller production runs and thinner sections where it delivers superior cutting performance combined with low operating costs.

TLM Laser offers IPG's LaserCube for cutting applications on thin metals and small sheet sizes

Manufactured by IPG Photonics, LaserCube is flat bed cutter is the ideal cutting tool for metals, including mild steel, stainless steel, aluminium, copper, brass and exotic alloys. Ideally suited to smaller part sizes, prototypes and smaller production runs, the LaserCube provides the most cost-effective capacity addition and lowest cost of ownership of any professional laser cutter.

Commenting on this most recent partnership and the benefits it will bring to TLM Laser, Director Andy Toms said “Having access to such a comprehensive range of field proven laser systems, supported with extensive processing knowledge, will allow us to offer tailored solutions to a much wider range of laser cutting applications. This will undoubtedly open up opportunities for TLM Laser in a number of new market segments and be a driver for growth within our business”.

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