A sandpaper manufacturer needs to cut discs of different shapes and sizes from sheets of sandpaper to fit a range of sanding tools. In addition, the discs must be perforated with dust extraction holes, which improve the performance and prolong the life of the sanding discs. For these processes CO2 laser cutting offers numerous advantages over traditional die cutting methods.
The non-contact laser process causes no deformation of the abrasive surface, and there is no tool wear. Laser cutting is flexible with no hard tooling needed, and it produces perforated hole sizes and complex patterns which exceed the capability of a die cutting machine. The laser-cut edges are smooth with a good finish. The CO2 laser is usually integrated with a galvanometer scanner, which allows both cutting and perforating operations to be carried out in a single automated process.
Luxinar’s SR series and SCX 35 sealed CO2 laser sources provide a unique anti-counterfeiting solution for travel and identification documents such as passports, national identity cards, visas, residence permits and driving licences.
The laser perforates a unique passport number through all of the pages, including the cover if desired. These characteristic perforations can only be produced using a laser, and thus the effect is difficult for a forger to reproduce.
Smaller perforations can be used to form graphics and greyscale images. This technique is most commonly used for ID cards and driving licences, where a laser-perforated “ghost” image may accompany a printed photograph of the cardholder. Laser perforations can also be applied to banknotes; in this case the laser solution is adapted to perforate information into the notes in sheet form, during the printing process.
Kiss cutting is the process of selectively cutting the top layer of a material, leaving the underlying layers intact. For example, our CO2 lasers can be used for kiss cutting self-adhesive labels made from paper, plastic, or a combination of both.
While traditional die cutting is well suited for this rapid, high-volume process, laser cutting provides far greater flexibility – cutting outlines can be changed as often as desired with no need for additional tooling, and the process can be applied to a wide range of materials.
The high stability of Luxinar’s lasers is critical in kiss cutting applications, where the laser must consistently cut the sticker and adhesive without damaging the carrier or backing paper. Different material types and thicknesses are accommodated by adjustment of the laser parameters. In addition, our lasers are available in three different wavelengths, allowing the laser to be tailored according to the absorption of the label material in some cases.
The laser ablates the inked coating on paper and card packaging materials, leaving a clear, high-quality mark. Contrast depends on the background colour, but is generally very good. Variable information such as best before dates, batch codes, barcodes and 2D Data Matrix codes can be applied on the production line, on the fly, with the information being updated continuously as required.
The laser marking process is quick, clean, and reliable. Marks are indelible and tamper-proof, and consumable costs are effectively non-existent once the laser coder is installed. This makes laser coding an attractive alternative to traditional ink-based technologies.
Whether cutting paper and card at high speed for packaging manufacture, or producing intricate and delicate designs for greeting cards and fancy stationery, we can provide a suitable laser for your process. Paper and card materials generally react well to the CO2 laser wavelength range, so the cutting process is fast and reliable, and quality is good.
The laser process allows complex designs to be cut with ease and precision, and designs can be changed or modified with a minimum of fuss. The non-contact nature of the process means that delicate pieces are not deformed or distorted during cutting.