Laser marking is an excellent method of leaving a mark on various objects, from medical tools to automated machines. Two common ways of doing laser marking are laser etching and laser engraving. Here, we’ll go through what makes them different and best suited for different scenarios.
Laser etching describes a process where the laser is used to change the surface texture of a material. This allows the creation of tactile, flame, and corrosion-resistant marks on an object. Laser etching also benefits from marking complex materials such as glass and metals.
While laser etching melts the material from an object, laser engraving can be defined as vaporizing the material from the surface to produce a mark. In this case, the contrast between the engraved and unengraved areas is less noticeable than in etching. Also, engraving is better suited for objects that don’t contain complex geometries, such as contours and grooves. Engraving also holds up better in abrasive environments.
How To Choose
Laser etching and engraving are popular choices for marking objects that need a permanent visual effect. Depending on the material, one process might be better suited than the other to produce a mark with the desired contrast, depth, and legibility.
Laser marking machines for etching work faster since they use less power and a lower temperature. This makes it better suited for items that need to be processed quickly. Engraving uses higher temperatures, so it needs more time. That’s why laser engraving is better for products that need higher durability and require the highest precision possible.
You Might Want Laser Etching If
- You’re working on any metal except stainless steel
- You need the fastest process
- You need a cost-effective solution
- You need to use laser marking before non-abrasive treatments
You Might Want Laser Engraving If
- You’re working on steel or aluminum
- You need a higher durability mark
- You need to use a laser marking before an abrasive treatment
Effective Laser Solutions
At Praxis Resources, we offer both lasers marking methods. Our laser experts work with high-power industrial lasers for the etching and engraving of various metals. We use lasers to mark components in industrial objects, defense industry, aerospace, and medical device manufacturing, among others.