Application note – Battery casing ablation with CO2 lasers


With the emergence of new technology such as electric cars, battery recycling is soon to be of major importance throughout the world. Battery module casings need to have their plastic coatings removed prior to recycling, with quick and easy removal being necessary to compete in this market. Depending on the thickness and composition, CO2 lasers can often ablate these coatings quickly and cleanly. A range of plastics and adhesives may be used, and thickness may be up to 500 microns. Different coating materials may exhibit different behaviour during laser ablation, even those with similar visual appearance. For this reason, testing of samples is always advised.


  • Use of a galvo system allows for speedy removal over a field large enough to cover most battery types.
  • Multiple passes are used to remove both the plastic and the adhesive from the surface of the battery casing. If successful, this leaves the casing electrically conductive.
  • High power does not necessarily mean greater speed, so a range of laser powers can be used for this type of application. Cycle time is influenced by other factors including spot size and hatching distance.
  • Some battery coating materials will leave a sticky residue, which can often be cleaned post-process with an appropriate solvent.
  • Flames are produced during material removal, along with large amounts of airborne debris and soot. This may interfere with the incident laser beam and affect the process. Good extraction is required to minimise this, and to avoid melting of material surrounding the ablation area.


If you would like us to test some samples, or if you require further information about this application, please contact

Ablation of dark blue adhesive tape coating

Pale blue plastic coating