The Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT has launched a laser system for remote fine cutting.

Thanks to its high flexibility with regard to component geometry it is particularly suitable for the production of prototypes and small series.

The Aachen-based research engineers said the system can be used to cut 0.2mm-thick steel sheets in seconds. Fitted with a 1kW single mode fibre laser and a mirror scanner, the unit can machine components in the millimeter range at cycle times of less than 100ms. This short processing time is achieved by dispensing with mechanical movement axes.

Beam movement is performed by mirrors mounted on highly dynamic galvanometer drives. Cuts of 20μm are achieved with suitable optical systems, so that precision parts can be processed rapidly and accurately.

Fine cutting with remote laser save costs in the production of prototypes and small series, because it offers more flexibility in component geometry than conventional methods such as milling or punching.