CO2 lasers produces a beam of infrared light to cut and engrave flat sheet materials, see one in action here:
- Laser cutting uses a computer to direct light at the material to be cut.
- The material then melts, burns, or vaporizes leaving an edge with a high-quality finish.
- See material edge finishes here
- The laser beam is guided by the lines in vector design files. Ponoko cuts on the center of the lines in your file.
- Dimensional accuracy of laser cutting is +/-0.005"
- Average Kerf (amount of material burnt away) is +/-0.004"
- Ponoko materials pages have more specific kerf averages under 'technical information' as this number is affected by material properties.
- The beam of light has a cone like shape, therefore edges are not always perfectly 90 degrees. This is more noticeable on thicker sheets of material.