Has your company struggled to create labels or barcodes that last for decades? Is it difficult to maintain part traceability with your current marking system? And how important is it that you’re able to read your mark long into the distant future? If part traceability, readability, and graphic clarity are priorities, laser marking might be the right strategy for you. And the following paragraphs will tell you how laser marking can be used to create lasting impressions.
Creating Lasting Impressions
While some marking processes involve adding ink or etching designs into a material, laser marking targets the surface of the material, itself, in order to produce a design. By creating an oxide layer, manufacturers can make an adjustment in a material’s hue in order to develop contrast. From a long-term perspective, this type of logo or design is much more likely to withstand erosion, which is why the laser marking process is commonly used in the automotive and medical industry.
How Laser Marking Compares to Other Processes
When marking a product, manufacturers might use a number of different processes to yield their desired result. Electro-chemical marking, silk-screen marking, vibro-etch marking, and laser marking are commonly used in applications that require designs and traceability. But each of these processes have their strengths and weaknesses. Electro-chemical marking, for example, although cost-efficient, is much more likely to produce low-quality marks than some of the other marking methods. Laser marking is among the most effective methods used to create designs because of its ability to produce long-lasting high-contrast marks. But it’s also a terrific pick because it can be used on parts with intricate shapes.
Using Laser Marking for Medical Applications
When it comes to medical marking, laser marking is one of the best marking options because of its ability to maintain the integrity of a material after it has been marked. Both the FDA (Federal Drug Association) and the EMDR (European Medical Device Regulation) require surgical instruments to feature marks on their bodies.
And laser marking systems are the most popular tools that are used to create those marks for a number of different reasons. Not only does it help to prevent bacterial growth in medical instruments, it’s also great at delivering permanent contrast marks.
In medical marking, studies have shown that high-contrast codes can withstand over 500 cleaning cycles with little wear. These marking methods can also help to prevent normal fading that takes place over the course of time, and corrosion. This makes surgical instruments as reliable as they can be while also creating traceability.
When specific laser parameters are used to create the desired design, manufacturers can expect that design to withstand basic wear and tear. Because of laser marking’s ability to create timeless features, it’s often used as the number one industry pick in the automotive and medical fields.
Here at Laser Marking Technologies, clients have access to a full range of laser types. Get in touch with us today to explore long-lasting processes like laser ablation, marking, engraving and etching, annealing, and full color laser engraving.