Laser beams can be generated in any of a number of ways, several of them suitable to certain commercial, industrial, and even hobby-focused applications. Each of these particularly practical options comes with distinct advantages compared to the alternatives.
Producing a laser beam with the help of a gas-filled tube, for instance, tends to endow it with healthy amounts of power relative to the cost of the equipment. A newer, more specialized approach that relies on optical fibers often ends up being superior, regardless.
There are at least five advantages of fiber laser systems that frequently tip the scales in favor of that technology. Learn about the following five benefits, and it should be clear why fiber lasers are becoming so popular with businesses and individuals alike.
1. Fiber Lasers Have Low Costs of Operation
The tubes found in so many laser systems wear out over time and eventually need to be replaced. When that moment arrives, the cost of ownership of a cutter or engraving device can jump by 50 percent or even more.
Fiber lasers often keep working for years without needing to have expensive parts replaced. More than one BBB boss laser review points to this advantage as a reason for adopting this technology instead of the tube-based alternative. Both businesses and individual hobbyists are generally sensitive to costs, and optical fibers perform very well in this respect.
2. Fiber Lasers are Versatile
Fiber lasers are more versatile than many realize and are only becoming more so. Although many special-purpose cutting machines still rely on the excitation of trapped gases, optical fibers have made plenty of related inroads.
As a result, fiber lasers are now used by companies in industries ranging from aerospace to sign production. They can also be employed with a wide variety of materials, often with no calibration being required.
3. Fiber Lasers Have Low Heat Output
Heat is the bane of many kinds of equipment, and laser machines are not exempt from the associated dangers. Some lasers include large cooling systems that struggle to dissipate the thermal energy generated over the course of even a few minutes.
Optical fibers make for an especially efficient gain medium. Power poured into a bundle of fibers emerges as a concentrated beam of coherent light, with very little wastage.
In addition to allowing fiber lasers to be more compact than systems that required extensive cooling, this helps protect delicate materials from the effects of ambient heat. Producing very little heat relative to the power carried by the beam itself is often a dispositive advantage for a fiber laser.
4. Fiber Lasers are Rugged
Glass tubes filled with gas are notoriously fragile and susceptible to wear and tear. A properly protected bundle of optical fibers can withstand forces and stresses that would destroy an expensive gas-filled tube.
While this is not always a significant strength, it frequently allows lasers to be used in environments that would otherwise rule them out. Many industrial applications that employ fiber lasers today would need to be accommodated in entirely different ways if this technology were not available.
5. Fiber Lasers are Highly Controllable
Being able to freely adjust the characteristics of a laser beam can open up entirely new options. Whereas other technologies impose strict limits on operators, fiber lasers tend to be more obliging. From beam length and intensity to the duration of each pulse, fiber lasers can be controlled with a high degree of precision.
These five strengths often make fiber lasers preferable to machines that rely on other technologies. Understanding the significance of each of these advantages will make it easier to recognize when a fiber laser is the best tool for a given job.