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01 November 2017

Trumpf’s Highspeed and Highspeed Eco profiling processes make nitrogen fusion cutting fast and cost-effective

Highspeed Eco basics Highspeed Eco basics
Higher laser cutting speed are possible with Trumpf’s Highspeed and Highspeed Eco cutting processes. A newly designed nozzle boosts the feed rate by up to 100% for solid-state laser machines that employ fusion cutting with nitrogen, without increasing laser power.

These new cutting processes also allow for nearly a twofold increase in sheet throughput, compared to standard cutting. What’s more, less cutting gas is used, thanks to the nozzle’s innovative design. The Highspeed process requires 40% less nitrogen on average; with the Highspeed Eco using 70% less.

Highspeed and Highspeed Eco can be used for fusion cutting of mild steel and stainless steel sheets at least four millimetres thick. And just one nozzle is needed in these cases, which makes mix-ups less likely and shortens setup times. Cut edges exhibit low surface roughness and a high-quality, homogeneous look.

Highspeed Eco and Highspeed can now be used on machines in the TruLaser Series 5000 equipped with an 8 kW solid-state laser. Soon it will be available for use with 6 kW solid-state lasers. The Highspeed process is featured on machines in the TruLaser Series 3000 fitted with a 6 kW solid-state laser. Many relatively new machines can be retrofitted with these processes.

In fusion cutting, gas under relatively high pressure blows molten material out of the kerf; this can mean high operating costs. Flame cutting using oxygen has usually been used for mild steel, especially for relatively thick sheets, but the advantage of low gas costs is offset by oxidised cut edges, which often need to be reworked. The new Highspeed and Highspeed Eco processes, by contrast, are faster and use less gas, which greatly increases the cost-efficiency of fusion cutting mild steel with nitrogen. In addition, the scope of application is now broader for 8 kW lasers used in fusion cutting. The laser can now cut sheets as thick as 12 mm – instead of just 10 mm, as in the past.

The Highspeed process makes use of a bi-flow nozzle. Some of the cutting gas passes through the center of this nozzle, as does the laser beam. The rest forms a secondary flow around the principal flow to concentrate it onto the kerf, expelling molten material more efficiently. The Highspeed Eco process relies on a patented nozzle fitted with a sleeve that forces the gas directly into the kerf, ensuring that little or no gas flows off to the side. While this moving sleeve glides across the material during fusion cutting, the nozzle remains 1.5 mm from the sheet surface. This ensures the nozzle can effortlessly withstand any chips generated during piercing – which accelerates piercing and minimises the risk of damage.

Andrew Allcock

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