Laser marking has long served as an ideal method for creating permanent, readable marks on even the toughest metals. Laser marking on metal is the process of projecting a concentrated beam of laser light through a lens and onto a metal surface. When the beam hits the metal, it permanently modifies its properties or appearance without physically removing materials.
You can use industrial laser engravers for metal to create unique identifiers like serial numbers, data matrix codes, logos, text and QR codes to ensure maximum manufacturing traceability. The key to successfully laser marking metal is knowing which machines will suit your application best.
At Telesis Technologies, Inc., we engineer state-of-the-art laser engraving machines for metal that set the standard for quality, performance and efficiency. We’re proud to offer a comprehensive product lineup that’s built to last.
Before you can perform laser marking tasks, you must choose a laser engraver for metal marking. You can use numerous machines to mark metal.
Fiber laser markers are considered the best laser marking technologies for metal. These marking machines are low-maintenance and precise and are known for eliminating consumables from the marking process.
Fiber laser markers can engrave all types of metals and are ideal for bare metals.
Vanadate lasers are excellent for metal marking due to their high beam quality, exceptional depth of focus and superior peak powers. These laser engravers are useful for fine marking heat-sensitive metals in applications where consistency is necessary.
You can use vanadate laser markers on ferrous and nonferrous metals.
Green laser markers for metal are used for cold and complex marking applications that require high beam stability. They are useful for sensitive and delicate metals with low absorption ratios and can produce soft and ultra-fine part markings. Green laser marking solutions are as fast as they are powerful.
CO2 laser systems mark materials used in high duty cycle environments and heavy-duty applications using a galvo-steered beam. These laser marking machines work with coated metals like powder-coated aluminum and anodized aluminum. They can also mark bare metals like nickel and titanium when pre-treated with a special compound prior to engraving.
Ultraviolet (UV) laser markers can produce deep, clear markings on uncoated metal surfaces ranging from platinum and aluminum to brass and stainless steel. These machines use a small, high-quality beam to produce precise micro-markings with sharp resolutions. They are ideal for cold marking applications that require the elimination of heat-affected zones.
If you’re looking to secure a dependable laser engraver for metal to take on your most demanding industrial applications, consider a fiber laser engraver. These machines have many innovative features that make them ideal for metal marking:
Every metal conducts heat and absorbs light differently. You can use laser marking machines for metal to work with numerous materials.
Steel is a hard metal, which can sometimes cause the marking process to take longer. Laser etching machines are ideal for marking steel surfaces with maximum speed, while laser engraving processes are better for creating robust marks. You can use laser annealing to generate corrosion-resistant marks beneath the surface of the steel.
Aluminum surfaces are highly conductive, making fiber lasers useful due to their high-temperature endurance. Laser engravers are best for producing durable marks, while etching is beneficial for increasing process speed.
You can laser mark any kind of stainless steel — though 304 and 316 grades are most common. Laser annealing is recommended for marking this metal due to its ability to create a smooth mark on the surface without changing the properties of the material.
Magnesium is a low-density metal used in the manufacture of lightweight parts. You can use laser etching machines to remove materials from magnesium surfaces, resulting in high-contrast black and white marks.
When you laser mark lead, the majority of the heat remains on the metal’s surface due to its low thermal conductivity. Lead also has a low melting temperature, making it easy to mark. This metal also requires lower amounts of energy to etch.
There are two ways to laser mark anodized aluminum. You can either mark the bare aluminum before it’s anodized or mark the anodized layer after the process occurs.
Laser engraving produces deep marks in bare aluminum to ensure they’re readable post-anodization. On the other hand, laser etching is beneficial for quickly generating high-quality marks on the oxide layer without removing the anodized layer.
Zinc is a corrosion-resistant metal known for its ability to be die-cast. Laser etching machines for metal are the only solutions that can generate marks with a high enough contrast on zinc surfaces, regardless of the alloy.
You can use one of three processes when laser marking on metal — laser etching, engraving or annealing. Though all three methods use a laser, each of them has different techniques and benefits.
Laser etching delivers high amounts of energy to a small surface area using a laser beam. The thermal energy from the laser heats the metal, causing its surface to melt and expand, resulting in permanent raised markings.
Laser etching is the fastest of the three laser marking processes for metal due to its low energy requirements.
Laser engravers for metal use laser beams to remove the material’s surface, creating deep, heavy-duty marks that can resist harsh environments, abrasion and most surface treatments. Though slower than other processes, engraving yields highly durable results.
Annealing, or carbon migration, is the process of slowly heating metal with a laser beam, causing oxygen to diffuse and bond below the surface. When the metal chemically bonds with molecules below the part’s surface, it creates a dark permanent mark.
Laser annealing is a process that doesn’t use ablation, meaning the laser does not remove materials from the surface of the metal. That’s why this marking method is often used to avoid damage to the part surface.
If you’re looking for a top-of-the-line laser engraver for metal marking, you can find a wide selection at Telesis Technologies, Inc. We’re known for engineering rugged and reliable laser markers and dot peen systems built with the highest-quality materials.
As a one-stop shop for all your marking needs, we can design turnkey solutions customized to your unique needs, taking on every step from equipment to software to integration. And if you ever require assistance, our expert team has the knowledge and experience to serve you.
Contact us for more information on our industrial laser engravers for metal today!