The MOPA laser marking system is an advanced marking system making waves in the marking industry. They are applicable in several industries and has different advantages over conventional marking machine. This article will discuss MOPA laser technology and introduce the advantages of using one over other marking machines and their applications.
What is a MOPA Laser?
MOPA (Master Oscillator Power Amplifier) lasers use a DUV light source design, increasing their performance and cost-effectiveness. MOPA laser has a master oscillator that generates light from low energy while the power amplifier intensifies the light to reach the necessary laser power.
What Can I Engrave With A MOPA?
MOPA laser has a large range of pulse duration. As a result, they have a larger scope of material compatibility. The laser system can make high contrast and accuracy on materials such as
- Metals: Aluminum, stainless steel, gold, brass, titanium, carbon steel, platinum, and tungsten.
- Plastics: PC, PLA, PBT, ABS,
What Are The Advantages Of A MOPA Laser Engraving Machine?
Below are a few reasons you should consider a MOPA laser marking machine:
· Kinder to metals
MOPA lasers do not produce much heat as other laser marking machines. As a result, there is less damage to the part you are marking. Furthermore, there is a reduction in the development of rust and subsequent burning/melting of the edge area. As a result, using MOPA lasers does not compromise the product’s corrosion resistance.
· Color marking in Stainless Steel
Color marking using a laser marking machine has been possible for a long time. However, MOPA lasers are more accurate and precise in color marking, especially in stainless steel materials
· Black marking of anodized aluminum
Removing the top layer of an anodized aluminum produces a faded white mark using a conventional laser marking machine. However, MOPA lasers allow you to repaint the anodized layers using its short pulse durations.
· Increased precision when melting plastics
MOPA laser markers can produce clear markings on plastic parts without foaming or melting, as other machines do. As a result, the marking is of higher quality and more uniform.
Other advantages of using the marking system are increased longevity and low maintenance.
MOPA Laser vs. YAG Lasers?
Both have similar operating mechanisms. However, certain differences put MOPA in the spotlight, evident in the industrial rush for the marking machine ahead of their outdated counterparts.
· Difference #1: Mechanism of Action
YAG lasers have a bulb as a pump source and a YAG crystal lasing medium. The lasing medium is in a gold-plated cavity optical resonator. On the other hand, MOPA lasers use a semiconductor pump source and fiber optic cable lasing medium and resonator.
· Difference #2: Lifespan
YAG lasers have lower longevity than MOPA lasers. As a result, they require more maintenance and replacement.
· Difference #3: Cooling Mechanism
YAG lasers emit more heat than MOPA. Hence, they require good water-cooling measures. Furthermore, the high heat leads to inconsistency during the marking process, which is not found in MOPA marking.
· Difference #4: Relevance
Most marking enthusiasts considers YAG lasers outdated. Compared to MOPA lasers, they are also inefficient and prone to misalignment problems.
Q-Switched Laser vs. MOPA Laser Systems
Q-switched and MOPA technology are both used in fiber lasers. However, they have fundamentally different mechanisms of operation.
· Difference #1: Pulse Duration
Q-switched lasers have a pulse duration between 80ns – 120ns, while the MOPA lasers have a pulse duration between 2ns-200ns.
· Difference #2: Frequency range
Q-switching laser marking machines operate on frequencies between 20kHz to 80kHz, while MOPA lasers are between 1.6 kHz to 1000 kHz.
· Difference #3: Material compatibility
Both laser markers can mark the same materials. However, MOPA lasers are more suitable for aluminum, plastics, and stainless steel.
What are typical applications for a MOPA laser?
MOPA fiber technology is applicable in laser marking materials such as stainless steel, black marking aluminum, and producing burn-free plastic markings on plastic parts. This article discussed MOPA laser marking machines, their application, and their advantages. Do you need a MOPA laser? Kindly contact us.