Laser drilling outshines traditional methods – such as electric discharge machining (EDM), electrochemical machining (ECM) or mechanical drilling – in many ways:
- contact-free and wear-free
- highly precise and extremely fast
- minimal heat input, no process medium required
tiny diameters and high aspect ratios achievable
Lasers can remove nearly any kind of solid material, including hardened steel, hard metal, ceramics and composites, regardless of material properties such as electrical conductivity or hardness. And because the removal method is contactless and force-free, even sensitive materials such as glass and polymer film can be processed with low defects.
When implemented as scan solutions, laser drilling offers outstanding flexibility and automation capabilities, as well as phenomenal miniaturization potential via spot sizes adjustable down to mere micrometers. Ultra-fine bore holes are achievable in the sub-millimeter range (e.g. trepanning for diameters ≥ 40 µm with high aspect ratios, or percussion drilling for diameters ≥ 20 µm) with very sharp edges at bore entrance/exit holes and short process times.
Scan systems enable economical and flexible structuring of extensive surfaces such as flooring for creating anti-slip functionality, or surfaces of injection molds and plastic or metal components for creating the lotus effect.
The packaging industry makes abundant use of laser perforation applications, ranging from fine holes for freshness-packaging gas exchange, all the way to tearing aids. Here, scan systems provide flexibility needed for diverse structures and designs, as well as the dynamics necessary for high-volume manufacturing.
Microvias play a critical role in creating high density interconnects for printed circuit boards (PCBs). Here, the sheer number of bore holes needed is only achievable via scan systems tailored to these requirements. They enable high precision and fast, cost-efficient production.
In contrast, optimized scan solutions are ideal for boring injection nozzles, which require precise holes in the sub-millimeter range with freely-definable geometries and high aspect ratios.
The following scan systems are particularly suitable for laser drilling: