Thermal cutting processes use heat for cutting. The abrasive waterjet process uses no heat, but cuts by abrasive erosion. All these processes provide precision non-contact cuts in a wide variety of materials, and cut in single pass, rather than multiple passes.
To better understand the various cutting processes, this program, part of the Fundamental Manufacturing Processes Video Series, examines, explains, and compares oxy-fuel cutting, plasma cutting, laser cutting applications, and abrasive waterjet cutting.
The oxy-fuel cutting segment explores the cutting variables, torch tip types, depth of cut variables, and oxy-fuel cutting machine tools.
The plasma cutting segment defines plasma, and talks about plasma gas types, plasma arc system elements, kerf width, cutting jet shielding, and more.
The laser cutting segment features the advantages and limitations of laser cutting while examining the process, laser types and features, machine types and components, laser holemaking, and more.
The abrasive waterjet cutting segment outlines the process and system components, the pressures needed, kerf and workpiece surface conditions, production application variables, and waterjet safety.
By Gary Conner
By George N Bullen FSME