Buyer’s Guide: Understanding Laser Machines

Laser Machine Beam Delivery Design

How does laser beam delivery influence the machine’s performance.

There are 3 major beam delivery designs in the laser equipment market:

1: Mirrors-on-gantry

The laser beam is reflected off of mirrors mounted on a two-axis gantry, then down through the focusing optics onto the workpiece.

mirror gantry image 1mirror gantry image 2

2: Post-Scanning Focusing

The focal lens is installed after the galvanometer-mounted mirrors.
galvo-mirrors scanning image

3. Pre-Scanning Focusing

The focal lens is installed before the galvanometer-mounted mirrors. This style is also called 3-axis or 3D beam delivery.

pre-scanning motion image 1
pre-scanning motion image 2

Beam Delivery Mode Performance comparison

Laser Processing SpeedLaser Processing Field AreaLaser Processing PrecisionWorkpiece 3D Surface Capability
Mirror-on-Gantry MotionModerate, up to 3m/sLarge, popular gantry sizes are 48″ or 60″Low. This can be improved by high precision gantry integration, but at higher costNot natively. Additional software and hardware required.
Post- Scanning MotionFast, up to 10m/s or 15m/sLimited by lens. Standard sizes are 4″, 7″, and 12″, with a maximum of a 15″. This can be supplemented by integrating with X-Y linear travel or robotics.High. Based on high resolution beam motion calibration, galvo feedback, and error correction.Not natively. Additional software and hardware required.
Pre- Scanning MotionFast, up to 10m/s or 15m/sLimited by lens. Max scanning field up to 24″ area, can be further integrated with robotics to extendHigh. Based on high resolution beam motion calibration, galvo feedback, and error correction.Yes, natively supported.

Note: These parameters are based on the most common designs, and do not include high costn non-beam delivery motion control integration setups.

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