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Laser Cutting Machine Vs Plasma Cutting Machine, Which Is Better?

Laser cutting machine or plasma cutting machine, which is better? In recent years, laser cutting machine becomes very popular and almost every sheet metal processing factory basically have at least one set laser cutting machine and one set hydraulic press brake. At the same time, plasma cutting machine own less market, but can laser cutting machine solve all cutting problem? In fact, both laser cutting and plasma have their own advantages and disadvantages, but the differences are also very large, such as working principle, cutting quality, use cost and so on.


laser cutting machine

Laser Cutting Machine Vs Plasma Cutting Machine, Differences:

1. The Working Principle Is Different

The laser cutting machine focuses the laser light emitted by the laser generator into a high power density laser beam through the optical path system. The laser beam irradiates the surface of the workpiece to bring the workpiece to its melting or boiling point. At the same time, high-pressure gas coaxial with the beam blows away the molten or vaporized metal. As the beam moves relative to the workpiece, the material will eventually form a slit for the purpose of cutting.

Plasma is a gas that is heated to very high temperatures and is highly ionized. It transmits the arc power to the workpiece. The high temperature melts the workpiece and blows it off, forming a working state of plasma arc cutting. Then, the metal is melted using a plasma arc as a heat source. The cutting is an arc, so there is often a certain arc when the cutting fails. Therefore, when the section we need is a right angle, the plasma cutter is no longer suitable.

2. Laser Cutting Machine Vs Plasma Cutting Machine, Different Cutting Quality

In terms of cutting accuracy, the CNC plasma cutting machine can reach within 1mm, and the laser cutting can reach within 0.2mm. Therefore, the precision of the laser cutting machine is higher.

The laser cutting machine can realize non-contact cutting with the surface of the workpiece, the cutting gap is small, the precision is high, the heat affected zone is small, and the cutting end surface is smooth and free of burrs. However, the cutting gap of the plasma cutting machine is slightly larger, the cutting end face is rough and not smooth, and the cutting precision is low.


3. Different Cutting Materials

Laser cutting machines are suitable for cutting a wide range of materials: metals, non-metals, ceramics, glass, etc. Plasma cutting is suitable for cutting various metal materials, mainly thick plate cutting.


4. The Cost Is Different

The purchase price of plasma cutting machine is much cheaper than that of laser cutting machine, because laser cutting machine is composed of many precision parts, and the cost of mechanical parts is higher.


However, in terms of the cost of consumables, the cost of consumables for plasma cutting machines is very high. For example, the entire torch (nozzle, swirl ring, electrodes, etc.) needs to be replaced within a few hours, and plasma cutters consume a lot of power. However, the cost of consumables for laser cutting machines is very low, there are few wearing parts, and almost no maintenance is required.

plasma cutting machine


Laser Cutting Machine Vs Plasma Cutting Machine, Advantages And Disadvantages

1. Advantages Of Laser Cutting Machine:

1) Fast laser cutting speed: sheet metal cutting speed can reach 10m/min, much higher than plasma cutting machine.

2High cutting quality: small deformation and smooth cutting table. The laser cut groove is very small, and the laser cut surface can be directly used for welding without grinding.

3) High cutting precision: The precision of laser cutting machine can reach 0.05mm, and the repeatability of positioning can reach 0.02mm.

5Laser cutting materials have a wide range of applications: both metal and non-metal materials can be used. There are metal laser cutting machines and CO2 laser cutting machines for non-metals.

6The laser can also be used for engraving, welding, drilling and other operations with powerful functions.


2. Disadvantages Of Laser Cutting Machine:

The cost of laser cutting machines is high, and the initial investment and maintenance costs are high. At present, thin plate laser cutting has high cost performance, but when the plate cutting efficiency is low, unless the quality requirements are high, laser cutting machine is not a good choice.

3. Advantages Of Plasma Cutting Machine:

1The advantages of the plasma cutting machine are that the plasma arc energy is more concentrated, the temperature is higher, the cutting speed is faster, the deformation is small, and it can also cut stainless steel, aluminum and other materials.

2The plasma cutting machine has advantages in cutting thick plates, because in the thick plate cutting process, a very high cutting speed can be achieved, which is much higher than that of lasers and flames.

4. Disadvantages Of Plasma Cutting Machine:

1Plasma cutting will generate harmful gases and arcs: The principle of plasma cutting determines the arc intensity, noise and dust in the cutting process, which will pollute the environment to a certain extent. Underwater plasma cutting is generally used for medium and thick plates, so the cutting thickness is limited.

2The verticality of the cutting surface is poor: one side of the cutting surface will have a large bevel, and the verticality is poor.

3During the cutting process, more cutting slag is generated on the surface of the cutting process. Since the process quality is not affected, the slag after cutting must be ground, which also increases labor costs.

4Plasma cutting has a larger heat-affected zone and wider slit. Not suitable for cutting thin plates, as the plate will deform due to heat.

5Consumables such as knives are consumed quickly. Now the cutting nozzle mainly relies on imports, and the cost is relatively high.

Since the hot sale of laser cutting machine, many customers think laser cutting can meet all their cutting requirements. However, the fact is fire cutting machine, plasma cutting machine and hydraulic shearing machine all have their own advantages compared with laser cutting machine. Choosing the cutting machine is dependent on the customer’s cutting requirements, so the customer should discuss more machine details with different machine companies.

Wuxi Shenchong Forging Machine has CNC shearing machine, plate roll bending machine, and CNC press brake machine for sale. Welcome to contact with us to discuss your cutting, rolling, and bending requirements.