Carbon dioxide laser is a kind of laser with high continuous output power at present. It developed earlier and its commercial products are more mature. It is widely used in material processing, medical use, military weapons, environmental measurement and other fields. In terms of the development and application of lasers, CO2 lasers were made and applied earlier and more frequently. As early as the late 1970s, CO2 lasers were imported directly from abroad for industrial processing and medical applications. Since the late 1980s, CO2 laser has been widely introduced and used in the field of material processing.
In recent years, although CO2 laser processing equipment is becoming more and more popular, laser is a new tool after all, and laser processing technology is also different from traditional processing methods. Therefore, in the process of introducing and using CO2 laser, industry has encountered a variety of problems, causing a lot of trouble to many manufacturers. This paper analyzes the application status and evolution of CO2 laser in different fields, and puts forward some common problems in the process of using CO2 laser. According to the classification of CO2 laser power, this paper expounds the application status and evolution of CO2 laser in various industries, lists and analyzes the main problems that CO2 laser users will face, and finally discusses the future of CO2 laser application The prospect is put forward.
CO2 laser is an important gas laser. This is because it has some outstanding advantages
First, it has higher power and higher energy conversion efficiency. The general closed tube CO2 laser can have tens of watts of continuous output power, which is far more than other gas lasers. The transverse flow electrically excited CO2 laser can have hundreds of thousands of watts of continuous output power. In addition, the output energy and power of transverse atmospheric pressure CO2 laser have reached a high level, which is comparable to that of solid-state laser. The energy conversion efficiency of CO2 laser can reach 30-40%, which is higher than that of general gas laser.
Second, it uses the transition between the vibrational and rotational energy levels of CO2 molecule. There are abundant spectral lines, and there are dozens of spectral lines of laser output near 10 microns. The high pressure CO2 laser discovered in recent years can even achieve continuously tunable output from 9 to 10 microns.
Third, its output band is just the atmospheric window (that is, the atmosphere is more transparent to this wavelength).
In addition, it also has the advantages of high optical quality, good coherence, narrow linewidth and stable operation. Therefore, it has many applications in national economy and national defense, such as processing (welding, cutting, drilling, etc.), communication, radar, chemical analysis, laser-induced chemical reaction, surgery, etc.
Over the years, China’s national science and technology program has done a lot of digestion and absorption work on axial flow CO2 laser and cross flow CO2 laser. The cross flow CO2 laser developed by China, the United States, Japan and Russia has low cost and high power. However, due to the poor beam quality, it is mainly used for remanufacturing and heat treatment. Axial flow CO2 laser developed by Germany has been widely used in laser welding and cutting because of its good beam quality. However, due to the high cost, complex structure, high maintenance cost and high operation cost of axial flow CO2 laser, it is difficult for small and medium-sized enterprises to accept, which leads to the slow progress in its popularization and application. Therefore, axial flow CO2 laser is obviously not the development direction of CO2 laser in China.